Research shows that 63% of Gen Z representatives prioritize organizational culture in the workplace over compensation, which is a significant shift when compared to previous generations. Therefore, modern organizations have to adapt their culture and policies to meet the evolving customers’ and employees’ needs. So, in the era of digital transformation and constant change, how can companies preserve their identities while navigating new challenges? And what does “digital culture” even mean? Read on to find out more.
Nurturing digital culture - table of contents:
Digital transformation has become the key to success in today’s business world. Many people believe that it is impossible to design true digital products for their customers while working in a hybrid, semi-analog reality. Organizations must, therefore, take a digital-first approach. To do so, however, they not only need to embrace new technologies but also develop an equally important aspect, which is digital culture.
What is digital culture?
The key characteristics of digital culture identified in the MIT and Capgemini report are:
- Customer orientation – listening to customers’ needs and expectations,
- Innovation – striving for continuous improvement and searching for new solutions,
- Taking data-driven decisions – using tools to analyze customer behavior and trends,
- Collaboration – being open to internal cooperation, between employees and departments, as well as external cooperation, with business partners, business environment, local governments, and NGOs,
- Flexibility and agility – the ability to adapt to change quickly.
An organization’s digital culture is therefore a set of values, beliefs, and behaviors that shape the way a company works in the digital environment. It impacts the approach to innovation, collaboration, and change management. This culture is crucial to remaining competitive in a rapidly evolving technological landscape, as it not only shapes how the organization is perceived but also influences the attitudes and skills of its employees.
How can an organization preserve its identity while undergoing the transition into a digital organization?
One of the primary concerns about the flexibility and openness inherent in digital organizations is keeping their identity. To maintain an organization’s identity during the digital transformation process, it’s worth pursuing several strategies:
- Nurture communication – clearly communicate your company’s goals and values to employees and partners. By doing so, your goals will remain constant and clear even if you adjust your methods to changing circumstances.
- Prioritize training – invest in developing employees’ competencies to support their adaptation to change.
- Align goals with values – make sure that all the steps of the digital transformation process are consistent with your company’s long-term vision, values, and culture you want to strengthen.
- Drive collaboration – encourage employees to share ideas, opinions, and experiences related to digital transformation to build trust and community.
- Monitor and assess – track the progress and results of the digital transformation process to ensure that you are staying true to your identity and achieving your intended goals.
Digital transformation success stories
Let’s take a look at the examples of companies that have undergone a successful digital transformation while retaining their identity and values.
One of them is Lego, a famous manufacturer of building blocks for children, which has successfully introduced digital innovations into both its products and internal operations. Lego has integrated plastic bricks with mobile apps and computer games, maintaining its values and market position. Meanwhile, Lego employees use digital tools to collaborate and communicate, as well as to create new solutions for customers.
Another example is Dell Technologies, a global digital leader that not only delivers innovative products and services to its customers but also undergoes its own digital transformation process within the organization. The company leverages cloud, analytics, and mobile technologies to optimize its business processes, organizational culture, and customer experience. Dell Technologies is also the initiator of the Digital Transformation Index, which shows how organizations worldwide are dealing with the challenges and opportunities of digital transformation.
Digital transformation success stories show that it is not enough to apply new technologies to existing processes. It is also crucial to align strategy, culture, and business model with changing market realities and customer expectations. Only in this way can you achieve a strong competitive advantage and ensure long-term business growth.
Challenges of digital culture
During the digital transformation of organizational culture, you may encounter various obstacles, such as:
- Resistance to change – a digital culture is highly desirable among new job market entrants but may face resistance from older employees. They might fear change and losing control over familiar tasks. To address this, effective communication and gradual implementation of changes are crucial.
- Technical issues – the transition to a digital mode can present challenges when it comes to implementing new solutions and effectively utilizing tools for remote work and shared file access in the cloud.
- Change management – due to potential difficulties, it is important to continuously monitor and update your digital transformation strategy to ensure that the organizational culture resonates with employees while preserving the company’s identity.
Making a distinction between hypes, fads, and valuable trends can be crucial for the success of your business. Introducing smart changes based on data analysis, consulting experts, and testing new solutions can contribute to the sustainable growth of your company. Remember that adaptation and innovation are integral elements of running a business, but it is equally important to maintain stability and consistency in your efforts.
In a rapidly changing technological landscape, digital culture plays a key role in achieving success. To effectively undergo digital transformation, it is important to understand its essence, keep the company’s identity, and focus on values such as innovation, collaboration, and flexibility. Following practical advice and analyzing success stories from other companies can help meet your digital transformation goals. Is your organization ready for the challenges of the digital future?
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