Digital transformation is a lifestyle change

Many organizations start their digital transformation journey to stay relevant. Yet, for many, the results stay behind. What are they missing?

On a recent episode of PnP Weekly, Vesa and I were talking to fellow MVP Karoliina Kettukari about the adoption of digital transformation projects. We talked about how important it is nowadays, how many organizations are in the middle of it and how many struggle to get good results.

Digital transformation has been trending for a while now.

Chart showing increasing Google trends for digital transformation over a period of five years

Over the last five years, interest in digital transformation has been continuously increasing. Many organizations use the term to depict their journey to a more digitalized collaboration and communication. As the world and the economy around them change, organizations are eager to adopt how they work to stay relevant. But it’s not that easy.

Microsoft offers organizations a powerful suite of tools named Microsoft 365 to facilitate digital collaboration and communication. These tools facilitate communication, collaboration, finding the right information and all that while staying secure. Microsoft 365 is probably the easiest way to facilitate collaboration nowadays. But in the end, it’s just a set of tools, that each and every organization needs to put to good use.

While many organizations are in the middle of their digital transformation, often they lack the results. And if they see short-lived gains, they see them decline over time. So why, despite all the efforts and powerful tools, results stay away?

You see, digital transformation is a lifestyle change. It’s not a diet or a quick fix. Rolling out a new intranet or Teams won’t transform how you work. Sure, these tools can be powerful stimuli but by themselves, they’re not enough.

When the initial excitement wears off, you’ll be left with a pretty intranet with outdated information that’s not used and empty Teams. Like Karoliina mentioned during our discussion, a transformation doesn’t happen in months, it takes years. I’d add to it, that you should look at digital transformation like a lifestyle change. Whatever idea you come up with, to be the desired way of work, ask yourself this: will you be able to sustain it over time? Will your internal marketing and communications keep posting weekly updates with beautiful pictures? Will your CEO and the management team be able to lead by example and share what’s keeping them awake openly? Will your colleagues be willing to share their work in progress with others?

All these things are a great way to transform how your organization works together. But unless you spend time on ingraining these changes in your culture, no matter what tools you put in place, it won’t work and you will be back to your old habits, just like you are after giving up a diet.

Photo by Austin Distel on Unsplash

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