Sensationalism. What better way to provoke a response from an audience than through sensationalism? It is a tool used often by the famous, but while their use may be a lot noisier, it is not exclusively theirs for the taking.
It is used by media and business to ignite responses in the corporate space just as effectively, but it has its downsides and should be accompanied by three simple words: use with care.
Using sensationalism to achieve a result can bring unnecessary complexity to the situation and may blur the message the business is trying to convey. Instead of a simple outline, it becomes a complicated enigma which people struggle to, or don’t want to, understand. This casual misuse of sensationalist terms and commentary has played no small part in the adoption and understanding of digital transformation.
A few seconds on Google searching for the term ‘Digital Transformation’ will return attention grabbing terms like: science fiction, human cost, jungle survival and futuristic reality. While the goal of the media outlet and writer is to attract attention, the result out of context can be sensationalist and confusing. Organisations looking to invest in the potential of digital transformation are put off by the obscurity of reference and the idea that digital transformation is nothing more than a new hype cycle built on a foundation of glass.
This is fundamentally untrue and we need to simplify the conversation to show the reality behind digital. It is about increasing access to information, allowing richer use of data and harnessing advancements in technology to drive efficiency and simplicity.
The goal of the organisation is to enable an ecosystem of shared value creation between its customers, environment, people and shareholders. In this context, digital transformation enables us to satisfy constantly evolving customer demands and create a sustainable and environmentally responsible business, allowing for the consistent growth of shareholder value.
Digital transformation is a process. It lets the business utilise all available digital technologies and information, engaging with and creating better value for the customer, while improving operational efficiencies. Business models are transformed and the organisation remains relevant and competitive. It is about agility, flexibility and the sustainable use of resources to take the business from tomorrow and into the future. That’s not sensationalism, it’s reality …
Desmond Struwig is the General Manager: Digital at Decision Inc. (Pty) Ltd.