Digital Fireworks

Accountability Growth mindset Transformation


Key Point: Everyone who is interested in a sustainable career must speak fluent “digital” or prepare to take a pay cut and/or perhaps be out of a job.

Some futurists believe that 70 to 80 percent of jobs will disappear in the next 20 years. There will be a lot of new jobs, but there is some genuine concern that there will not be enough new forms of employment in a short period of time.

Now, I’ve heard similar predictions in my lifetime which never panned out. Of course, the future does not always or even usually unfold as predicted. However, a mind-blowing change of how products and services are delivered is upon us.

Please comprehend the following statement: “Digital” is NOT the IT department. It is a mindset and execution competence embraced by EVERY part of the organization. 

Note the following comments from an article written by Chloe Green: “Gartner predicts that a lack of digital business competence will cause 25 percent of businesses to lose competitive ranking by 2017… In a digital business, digital technology, for the first time, moves into the forefront, into the heart of what the business is doing and how it generates revenue, seizes competitive advantage and produces value. Digital business represents a more extreme revolution than previous technology-driven changes.”

As I write this blog, I’m on a plane returning from San Jose after attending Finovate 2016, a conference showcasing 70 plus companies all aiming at disrupting the financial industry. There are literally billions of U.S. dollars being poured into these digital invaders. If we don’t embrace and execute a digital mindset in every part of our business, we are at serious risk.

According to Green, Gartner has identified six crucial steps that are necessary in the digital journey. How do you stack up personally and as an organization?

Step 1: Create the Right Mindset and Shared Understanding.

People at all levels must have a voice to “envision and design new businesses that integrate people, businesses and things to do things that were not possible five years ago.”

Step 2: Put the Right Leaders in Place.

“The fast-moving digital world is exposing gaps in digital leadership, especially with regard to front office disciplines… Three types of digital business leader have emerged to fill these leadership gaps:

  • The digital strategist
  • The digital marketing leader
  • The digital business unit leader”

Step 3: Launch a Digital Business Center of Excellence.

Create a digital business center of excellence (COE) to provide input, advice and opportunities for the collaborative formation of a digital strategy.”

Step 4: Formulate a Digital Strategy to Respond to Opportunities and Threats.

Most if not the entire current business model must be reimagined. The Product and Service Portfolio must be completely reinvented with the customer at the center in new ways that dramatically improve the customer experience.”

Step 5: Find, Develop and Acquire Digital Business Skills and Roles.

Digital business is not an IT program, but an organizational mindset… Yet even in IT, according to Gartner’s 2014 CIO Agenda survey, 42 percent of 2,339 CIOs from 77 countries surveyed said their IT organization did not have the right skills and capabilities in place to meet upcoming digital business challenges.

Step 6: Create New Digital Business Capabilities.

Organizations should mine informal networks and investigate ‘work mash-ups’ by applying digital business and digital technologies to the distribution of work and look at piloting new channels for finding, building and acquiring digital business capabilities.

Character Moves:

  1. If you can’t complete a commercial or interpersonal transaction on your mobile phone or other device, you’re not thinking mobile or digital. Apply that idea to your life and see if you think and act differently. 

Digitally speaking in the Triangle,


One Millennial View: I work in the digital TV department of my company, and one of our main flaws and roadblocks is our inability to successfully communicate what we do to the other departments in our company (insert a variety of mystifying complications as to why). I often hear my manager complain, “They just don’t get it.” This is baffling! We are NOT curing cancer. It’s new, but it’s not that hard, and we’re happy to share all. The phone analogy is a great concept to start with… If I can’t watch it/see it on my phone, I don’t want to be involved with it.

– Garrett

Edited and published by Garrett Rubis