I think about change a lot. Today, of course, we all consider how the reality of the business, in a post – pandemic world, will change the way we manage our organization and ourselves. When looking at organizational change, I understand that firms must quickly engage new team members to ensure the business sustains itself after more seasoned members choose to retire. I am especially interested in how firms integrate and prioritize digital technology as a solution to support the ever-changing environment that organizations must navigate.
Successful organizations, large and small, profit and non-profit, must take what they learned during the pandemic and establish sustainable practices to further accelerate digital transformation and empower the best talent to meet these needs. Are these priorities so different from the past three or four decades, where many companies embraced enterprise applications? Yes and No.
Yes. Here is where speed is critical. In contrast to the multi-year efforts to avoid a Y2K technology meltdown at the dawn of the 21st century, digital transformation in the 2020’s happens fast! Organizations, fueled by adrenaline, pivoted overnight to keep their firms running in March 2020. Today, less than two years later, I find that we must not divert our efforts to continue to automate and use the emerging digital technologies to keep up with new products, competitors, and the rapid pace of new cybersecurity threats.
No. Anyone who has worked in information systems appreciates that digital decisions are long-lived and organizations evolve to meet the installed system. Recently, I was reminiscing with a former manager, and we could not help but reflect on the impact projects retained; in one case, over 20 years for a system that supported a significant financial payment operation. One thing all of these successful projects share is working in diverse teams with succession planning for people, process and technology.
Change will happen far faster in the 2020’s than before and we must consider how to make change age well. How do we make this happen when workers will trade loyalty for flexibility, financial reward, and the opportunity to work on something new? How do we avoid make decisions so quickly to meet a “hot” trend only to find that our business might be better to consider how to scale to meet our growing demand? These are the challenges for our new reality and the ability to learn from the past to make for a successful tomorrow is the opportunity that awaits us all. If you or your business are struggling with how to adapt to change in these digitally disruptive times, please contact Jill Klein Advisors for a consultation.