facebook Created with Sketch. instagram Created with Sketch. linkedin Created with Sketch. twitter Created with Sketch.

Key Success Driver To Digital Transformation

Fashion Retail

Transforming digitally is a need for anyone in any business now. It is not about wanting to transform that matters, but knowing how to. This edit focusses on the key to a successful digital transformation backed by research. Before we begin, here is a video from Nicky Verd (trailer of her book) author of Disrupt yourself or be disrupted which sets a perfect context for the need. Please click the image to watch the video or here.

# Culture Eats Strategy for Lunch

A quote we often hear “Culture Eats Strategy for Lunch” puts a focus on the power of culture to resist any compelling strategic narratives. These days there is no compelling narrative than Digital Transformation. This can find itself at odds with culture, so what chance could it have? (courtesy Geoffrey Moore)There are two types of cultures companies demonstrate.

1. Competition Culture 

Teams get up every morning driven to be the best

2. Collaboration Culture

Teams strive to be the best for others

Both cultures can create great companies. You can make the culture an ally of change if you play your cards right.

Which is your company’s culture (1) or (2)? Good news is, in both cases, you can use your culture to focus on people as a driving force of change. We will come back to this later in the edit.

Let’s use review the research outcomes on the digital transformation of companies across the spectrum of maturity from early to maturing and their traits by MIT Sloan.

# Digital Transformation: Research Insights

A 2017 research by MIT Sloan on business transformation by companies across sectors revealed how various companies are transforming their businesses. Given below is the research findings for the retail business. If you would like to see an interactive chart for your region, you can check it out here. You may assess where you stand in the pack. You can also access the full report here.
The research categorised the companies into three groups and looked at their behavior for digital transformation

1. Early-stage companies
2. Developing-stage companies
3. Maturing companies

The research found out three different approaches across the stages of the companies in digital adoption.

Early-stage companies report that their primary method for driving digital adoption and engagement involves mandating digital initiatives from management. In this situation, organizational leadership decrees the nature of the next digital initiative, and employees are then expected to fall in line. A key problem with this approach is that top-down directives can often be a surprisingly ineffective tool for driving digital adoption.

Developing-stage companies follow a different approach. These companies simply expect employees to adopt digital platforms. companies often spend considerable time, money, and energy implementing digital platforms, expecting that the value of these digital tools will become so apparent to employees that they will be drawn naturally to them to perform their work. Companies that simply expect employees to adopt generally emphasize the technological side of digital implementation — and often execute that implementation well — but then forget to accompany the new digital infrastructure with the organisational change management initiatives required.

Maturing companies, however, lead digital transformation in an entirely different way. Instead of explicitly pushing digital transformation, they focus on creating the type of environment where these shifts can occur. Nearly 80% of respondents from maturing companies note that their organization drives digital transformation by cultivating a strong digital business culture that strives for risk-taking, collaboration, agility, and continuous learning.

# In Conclusion

It is clear what differentiates the maturing too early and developing companies is their approach to adoption. It is the “How” that matters not the “What”. If the “How” is not addressed, a lot of your digital transformation initiatives may not provide the intended return on investment (ROI).

It all boils down to the culture of the organisation and the environment we create for adoption. The culture that maximises the probability of adoption is the one which enables,

1. Risk-taking: If you want to be 100% sure, you will be 100% late
2. Collaboration: It is “Us” vs “I” or not What is in it for me?
3. Agility: Speed matters
4. Continuous Learning: It’s ok to make mistake, but do not repeat but move forward learning from it.

Linking back to our earlier conversation on competitive and collaborative cultures, the way to win or succeed is to focus people on a driving force of change that is outside of your company (courtesy Geoffrey Moore).

Change your war cry!

Competition culture, this would be a competitor using disruptive technology to steal your market share. Think Google for Microsoft, Lyft for Uber, Nvidia for Intel, or Arista for Cisco. Transform or they win! That’s the sort of thing that galvanizes change in a competition culture.

Collaboration culture, the driving force is fear of letting your customer down as the world shifts to a new platform. Think of Salesforce championing machine learning, Docusign championing systems of agreement, or Proofpoint championing people-centric security. These are changes that could put your customers’ franchises at risk. No customer left behind! That’s the battle cry that brings a collaboration culture to attention.

Transformation requires sacrifice. We are going to have to step back before we step forward.

People are willing to sacrifice for the right cause outside the company, but not inside. So, when you are leading a transformation, be sure to keep people’s attention focused on a North Star that transcends their individual issues, not on the career compass they are holding in their hand.

Knowing all this, how will you transform your fashion/lifestyle brand, in particular the supply side. In retail, there are two sides to the coin “Consumers” and “Products”. While a lot has been talked about in digital transformation facing consumers, less attention is paid to the “Products”. This is what kept worrying us and Stylumia was born.

Principally we enable the supply-side digital transformation of fashion and lifestyle retailers, brands and manufacturers at Stylumia, embedding technology into your product decisions. The way we embed Intelligence into the fashion and lifestyle supply chain and the related solutions are given below. Companies ranging from Fortune 100 to medium and small are engaging and benefitting from Stylumia solutions globally. We do not just bring the “What”, we are stay put with you to share our insights on “How” of the transformation.
If you are interested in digitally transforming your product decisions by embedding intelligence, please reach out to us to make your business future-proof and before it is too late.
Blog by Ganesh Subramanian

Subscribe to our insights

Subscribe now to receive our thought leading insights right into your inbox

Related Blogs

Building A Socially Responsible Brand

In this edit, we look at the need for social responsibility and how to build a socially responsible brand. Before we begin, rest your mind and close your eyes for 30 seconds.Most probably your mind darted from one thought to another. Instead of being at rest, it was as highly active as ever. If you […]

on May 24, 2020

The Future Of Fashion Forecast And Cash Flow

For instance, in 2018 the world produced 150 billion garments, and more than 50% of them are not wanted by consumers (another reference here). This is in spite of all the current methods of fashion forecasting. Hence, there is a huge impact of blocked capital in the industry and also a huge load of sustainability. […]

on May 18, 2020

How To BOOST ECommerce Sales?

These are the times to amplify ecommerce and digital transformation in retail. This edit talks about six ways to amplify ecommerce sales.

on May 9, 2020