Don’t forget the other parts of this series:
When speaking of the digital world everyone’s natural inclination is to think technology. While technology forms a key component of this digital first realm, it’s not the only component nor is it the hardest component. Culture makes the top of my list for the hardest things you must tackle in your digital transformation. It means you have to get the entire company on the same page and moving in the same direction. In many cases, you have to fight the flow of the river as you get everyone to think customer first and in creating great experiences in the digital channels. It’s not impossible but you cannot be afraid to address it. While I rely on my Change Management team to help with this, I can still point to a few things you should do when addressing culture.
- Plan on it from the beginning. When I spoke about insight a couple days ago, I mentioned that you should do a self-assessment which we call CXIQ. One key component is culture. Determine where you stand and how ready your company culture will support the changes necessary to be competitive in the digital realm.
- Gain buy-off from key executives. They can either give your change a chance of success or they can completely sabotage it. I’d go so far to say that without their championing digital transformation, you are certain to fail. They need to approve budget, communicate their approval, and actually act as champions. This is especially important when you have significant cultural inertia to overcome.
- Determine what, if any, organizational changes need to occur. Sometimes a shakeup in your organization will both set you up for the future and prime the pump of cultural change
- Create and Act upon a communication plan. Plan implies continued effort to explain what you are doing and why it’s important.
- Celebrate your successes. Digital Transformation occurs over time. It’s a journey. You have to take time out and look at the change and what you’ve achieved, even as you struggle with some challenges.
- Reward those who buy into the change. Rewards come in many forms from simple recognition to incented bonuses when change is achieved. Every company is different so I’m not going to push one particular approach.