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By Michel Hamilton, Chief Transformation Officer, Pt Rabobank International Indonesia
We are entering an era where evolution and transformation are shifting in a very fast pace. In this kind of era, it’s very challenging to keep having an old mindset of competition and closed environment. The term of sharing community is everywhere and the era of world without boundaries is already emerging.
The ability to ‘ride the wave’ and be adaptable are needed instead of avoiding and trying to run away from it. If we look at the Top Fortune 100 Companies today compared to several decades ago, it has shifted quite drastically, and the future market leader will not be as sustainable as before. We are now seeing the capability of leading companies in the market to come up with multiple innovations and creativity at a rapid pace within a very short period of time.
So, the question is, what are the key ingredients of their success in developing new innovations and launching it in a very quickly?
It’s none other than the establishment of an environment that embraces community-based solution making, through openness and collaboration. Now, every company should transform their mindset, culture, and behavior in a very drastic manner. Those with dynamic, risk-taking, and creative business models will slowly swallow the enterprises that still embrace the older mindset.
Creativity without boundaries is something that needs to be cultivated in every organisation. A robust & comprehensive transformation approach must be adopted by those organisations that are still not able to catch up with the new trends ahead.
In order to be sustainable and relevant in the digital era, companies need to ensure that transformation is being embedded into 4 main areas, which are
1) company culture, behavior and mindset
2) business model
3) process and governance
4) technology adoption, in order to become a data-driven organisation.
Shifting the company culture, behavior and mindset
First and foremost is to shift the company culture, behavior, and mindset. Many companies in various industries are still very reluctant to adapt and adopt the new way of doing business. They are often still trapped in the old approach where everyone is considered to be competitors, not willing to share their business model with others and require a long decision making process.
Successful organisations today have a culture where they see every other companie in the same or different industry, as an opportunity to collaborate, introduce a different business offering, and provide better services to the customers. These companies encourage innovation and creativity to immerse their clients organically, internally, or through partnerships. A successful organisation is also the one that provides a safe environment for everyone to raise their ideas (speak up), provide their feedback freely, and give recognition to the most innovative and creative ideas.
On the other side, we have also seen many organisations that are still very reluctant with the changes. They want to have stability, demand to have less changes in the way they do their business, and struggle to adapt to a new way of business. However, successful organisations recognise that the change is inevitable and their culture, behavior, and mindset always put change at the center of their company culture to bring forward the mindset of continuous improvements as their main behavior.
Each organisation should shift their mindset, culture and behavior to embrace change as part of their core values, create an environment that encourage innovation that immerses clients organically, internally and externally. Continuous improvement should be part of their daily activities and be part of the core company behavior.
Creating a business model that embraces technology and collaboration
We have seen that various industries have started to put technology as their key business offering in the market, and not as a business enabler.
The best way to survive in this new civilization is by embracing the openess, collaboration and creative culture enabled through transformation in company mindset, culture & behavior
Additionally, every company should start thinking of building a larger ecosystem through collaboration with various parties from the same or different industries. In the past, we never imagined that a bank can become a personal wealth advisor or we have not thought of how a telecommunication company can be a payment transaction services too. This model of collaboration can evolve to share their IT infrastructure and solutions. New business offering can be developed through the most uncommon collaboration that we could ever imagine.
Future business models should put the customer at the center of their business offering. Technology will be vital in a business model that creates a better customer journey and experience. Developing an ecosystem that promotes collaboration with a variety of other industries to create a different business offering for the customers will be future proof business models in the digital era.
Embracing agile, lean, and simple operating models and governance
In many cases, being rigid, with a lot of bureaucracy and administration can become a killer of innovation and creativity in a majority of organisations. One of the critical transformation agenda to enable collaborative, creative, and innovative organisation is to have an operating model and governance that is agile and flexible to adapt and adopt with the changes happening in this era.
Transforming to be a lean, simple, agile, and nimble organisation requires full effort from every stakeholder in the organisation. This involves the compliance, legal, risk and audit departments. It is always necessary to ensure that being simple does not mean being unorganized. There are still many governance and control mechanisms that need to be put in place, but it should be less administrative.
One of the most easy starting points is to embrace digitalisation in the internal organisation operating model, by adapting paperless approval and moving into a workflow-based system approval. This will help in improving your turn-around-time in reviewing and approving any internal process that requires various controls.
Subsequently, each process within a large and sustainable organisation must come into a diagnostic phase and run detailed waste analysis, strip out all unnecessary, redundant and overlapping processes, and add real control that needs to be put in place. A continuous improvement habit that has been instilled in an organisation will accelerate the process together with digitalization adoption.
Furthermore, any organisation that has been able to adopt Agile methodology as a totality in combination with Design Thinking framework will be able to define a new way of working and will enable an environment that motivates lots of new ideas to be nurtured in a natural way.
Define the agile operation model design with lean process to govern it. Infuse DesignThinking framework as a habit to stimulate innovation in each of organisation. Bring forward the ability to transform the organisation in a fluid way to adapt into the volatility of future markets.
Adopting Digital Analytics in our way of workAs we speak of and see various digital analytics adoption around us, we tend to forget that we also need to embrace and implement digita analytics into our day-to-day activities. Digital analytics adoption is not something that you can achieve in an instant, it is a journey that requires all out effort, dedication, and collaboration to be able to adopt it into our culture.
Digitalisation is also a means to improve our data quality (through self-service capability), enhance the turn-around-time, flexibility, and discipline of our processes (through paperless worfklow capability), reduce non-value added activities (through robotic process automation), improve trusted repository (through blockchain) and enable automation intelligence (through machine learning, big data and predictive engine).
Being a digital analytics organisation means that we always think about what technology we can enable and what data we can leverage to generate lots of fruitful ideas and provide new capabilities in improving our customer experience and journey.
Intelligent automation, machine learning and predictive modelling will be the key differentiator for every organisation in defining their business strategy, product offering, collaboration opportunity and operational efficiencies. Hence, it’s not an option for any organisation today to not embrace the technology. The ones that have the courage, culture and behavor of putting digital analytics first will be those who will be able to survive and sustain in the digital era.
Accelerate the ability to blend digital analytics into your internal processes and external offerings. Change your way of working and put digitalisation and data analytics at the core of your processes to ride the wave of change with ease.
To conclude, the digital era wave has already arrived and the best way to survive in this new civilization is by embracing the openess, collaboration and creative culture enabled through transformation in company mindset, culture & behavior, business model, governance and process, as well as adoption of technology and analytics. Competitive, closed-environment and non-creative organisations will soon be banished from this era. Therefore, to quote Socrates, “the secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new”, so let’s start embracing the change! Don’t you forget, “if you catch the wave right, you will ride the surf well!” Start your collaboration journey and stop thinking about the competition!