Would you choose to receive dental treatment from a dentist with bad teeth? Fitness coaching from a coach that is unfit? Change management consulting from an organisation resistant to change?
At the First International Innovation 4.0 Forum this week, we took in multiple vendor presentations about the digital transformation of entire industries, including the services those vendors offer their clients, which, of course, begged the question:
how far along are those vendors themselves in their own digital transformation?
For instance, the conference was opened by Eric Schaeffer, leader of Accenture’s Digital Industry X.0 program, who argued confidently that “business as usual is not an option anymore”, a statement we agree applies to companies across industries. He went on to argue that transformation is a continuous process rather than simply a discrete step:
“Like the tide, it keeps rolling. You have to live with it. That’s the bottom line.”
It would therefore be interesting to understand to what extent Accenture—and their peers—themselves have, internally, embraced a culture of continuous change and ongoing transformation. We wonder because we ourselves at reelyActive, despite having a small and highly motivated team who believe we should practice what we preach, nonetheless find this to be a challenging and demanding endeavour.
Earlier this year we asked Are we selling discomfort? The answer is yes: data from our platform indeed highlights that business as usual is no longer an option for our clients—far from a comfortable proposition. Said differently, vendors selling comfort are selling something other than transformation. Those leading the business of transformation are effectively selling discomfort, both externally and internally. And how many companies are actually comfortable with that?
So, for those advancing toward Industry 4.0, or X.0, or [insert buzzword here], we offer as advice to ask your digital transformation provider how they themselves realised their own digital transformation. There is, quite literally, much to be learned from their answer.