Digital Transformation Guide: Visioning- 5 mins
Links: Versión en Español
There is no framework, methodology, or consulting firm that guarantees the best strategy to transform an organization.
In the previous article, I proposed that the Digital Transformation Strategy is a product for changing an organizational mindset, and its customers are every person in the same organization. So, you can use innovation principles to discover the strategy.
In this article, I will share how to structure a visioning workshop where the organization leaders will define that hypothesis.
Before the workshop
There is a lot of information available, like success stories, failure stories, and fairy tales.
Start by researching about digital transformation. Look for any information you can get from your local and international context. After that, classify all your findings in the following categories:
- Digital Transformation in general
- Digital Transformation in your sector
- Digital Transformation in your close competitors
Finally, prepare a presentation to summarize everything. Make it easy to understand, because you are going to use it in the workshop and also when you share the results to the entire organization. So work hard and prepare the best presentation you can. If you need help, check out these books:
- Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery by Garr Reynolds
- Slide:ology: The Art and Science of Presentation Design by Nancy Duarte
Schedule interviews with the organization leaders and use all the information you have to show them possible scenarios during the digital transformation. Adapt techniques like Design Thinking, Service Design o Human-Centered Design to empathize with them, and capture all their reactions and expectations. If needed, schedule one-to-one meetings to fill any gap about critical concepts required for the workshop.
Location and time
Choose the best location and time. The place should be comfortable, with a lot of light and where nobody can interrupt you. The best time is in the morning and the first day of the month or any Monday. Daniel Pink gave that and other recommendations about timing in his book When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing.
During the workshop
Everyone leading the workshop should keep the energy high to engage the audience. Nothing happens as planned, so do not feel worried when you have to adapt or change the workshop on the go. Just maintain the focus on defining the digital transformation hypothesis.
The base structure of the workshop is the following:
- Icebreaker (Approximately 10 minutes)
- Workshop Rules (Approximately 5 minutes)
- Introduction (No more than 30 min)
- Digital Transformation Definition (Between 1 and 1.5 hours)
- Break (Between 15 and 30 minutes)
- Digital Transformation Pillars (Between 1 and 2 hours)
- Commitments (No more than 30 min)
1. Icebreaker Game
An icebreaker can help the leaders to start the workshop with high energy. If you do it right, it can also help them to set aside any worry or problem behind and focus on defining the hypothesis. In my experience, Clown or Improv warm-up games are the best, because it makes people laugh. Don’t forget to choose only the games that your audience can do without any difficulties.
2. Workshop Rules
Share the objective, structure, and time available for the workshop. I recommend continually repeating that all the agreements are going to expire in six months. After that, you will have another workshop to adapt or change the hypothesis. This technique will help to avoid any discussion about long term goals or plans.
Use the presentation you made and share with your audience the local and international context of Digital Transformation. Help them to recall all the more essential concepts. I recommend using storytelling techniques to capture their attention and inspire them.
4. Digital Transformation Definition
The organization leaders should define what Digital Transformation is. Having just one definition will make it easy for everyone to go in the same direction. Check out the book Gamestorming by Sunni Brown & James Macanufo, and choose games to help the leaders to discuss and agree upon a definition. In my experience, you will get the best results by challenging them to include some words like customers, adaptation, data, etc.
5. Digital Transformation Pillars
The organization leaders should choose the value streams where the Digital Transformation will create more business value. To do so, first, you need to show them the essential value streams. Vijay Govindarajan, the author of The Three Box Solution, proposed a powerful method for allocating the organization’s energy, time, and resources; and you can use it to classify the value streams.
- Box 1: The present. Value streams that keep the current business going.
- Box 2: The past. Value streams that were successful in the past, but you have to forget.
- Box 3: The future. Value streams for new business models.
Leaders should discuss and prioritize three value streams. I would expect that they prioritize streams from Box 3 and maybe Box 1, but none of Box 2.
All the organization leaders should state how they are going to help during the MVP Strategy of Digital Transformation. It will be better if they write it down. I highly recommend you to take pictures and if you can, film them too.
After the workshop
Use all the communication channels in the organization to share all the results. Additionally, share a video where you explain about the Digital Transformation Hypothesis for the next six months.
Executing the MVP Strategy
The Digital Transformation Hypothesis establishes the context where you are going to discover how to change the organizational mindset. Therefore, it is time to start with the transformation.
In the next article, I will share what options you have to start executing!