Creativity & Diversity in Digital Transformation

Written By: Kyler Cheatham
Date: April 25, 2022

When most people think of digital transformation, they think of computer science and technical experts. However, we believe that creativity and diversity are essential for any digital transformation project to be successful.

Here's why:

Diversity brings different perspectives and ideas to the table. This is essential for any digital transformation project, as it helps to identify potential problems and solutions that might otherwise be missed.

Creativity is critical for coming up with innovative solutions to problems. Without creativity, digital transformation projects can quickly become stale and ineffective.

So, if you're embarking on a digital transformation project, make sure to diversify your team and encourage creativity throughout the process. It'll make all the difference in the success of your project!

What Right Brain Thinkers Bring to a Technology Project

Right brain thinkers are often seen as the "creative" or less tech-savvy types. These stakeholders provide innovative ideas and solutions that can make all the difference in a technology project while creating a lucrative competitive advantage.

Right-brain thinkers bring a valuable perspective to any digital transformation project.

  1. Right-brain thinkers are often more open to new ideas.
  2. They're good at seeing the big picture and thinking outside of the box.
  3. Right-brain thinkers have strong communication skills.
  4. They're often able to solve problems in unique ways.
  5. If you're looking to optimize your digital transformation project team, consider working with a right-brain thinker. Their creativity and fresh perspective can be invaluable.

Also, communicative thinkers open the door to vulnerability and lessen the pressure on hard metrics and analytics. Making room for a qualitative approach creates a culture of transparency, thus making it more likely that significant issues with a project will be surfaced and addressed instead of hidden from leadership. This openness has an extreme effect on lessening any possibility of blowing up the budgets or timelines.

Technology is essential for digital transformation, but it's not the only ingredient. Creativity and diversification of thinking are fundamental to any successful project.

Creativity in Organizational Change Management and Company Culture

When most people think of organizational change management, they think of process improvement and Six Sigma methodologies. However, we believe that creativity is a main strategy in any successful organization's change management initiative.

Without creativity, organizational change management projects can quickly become ineffective and often the main catalyst for failure. Innovative thinkers can see the whole picture of the business, while holistically understanding the need for organizational change strategies and establishing a culture of change. Thus, making this business more flexible and innovative.

This comprehensive thinking is key to identifying potential problems and solutions that might otherwise be missed. Or areas of resistance within the organization that may need a different approach to achieve full business value with an ecosystem of new technology.  

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Builds Business Resiliency

Business resiliency is the ability of an organization to withstand external shocks and continue to function or evolve to meet new demands. A resilient business can adapt to changes in the marketplace and continue to operate profitably. Most important resiliency requires creative problem solving and a culture that embraces change with innovation instead of fear.

Many factors contribute to business resiliency, but one of the most important is creativity. Creativity makes businesses more flexible and enables them to come up with innovative solutions to problems. Our right-brain thinkers bring ingenuity and dexterity to business strategies.

In today's world, businesses must be able to adapt quickly to changes in the marketplace. The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many businesses to change the way they operate. Some businesses have had to shut down completely, while others have had to pivot to a new business model.

The businesses that have been able to weather the storm are those that established inventive new solutions or operating models.

Being nimble with outside-of-the-box thinking doesn't just help businesses survive tough times, it also helps them thrive. Building a resilient business requires careful planning and execution. But the rewards are well worth the effort, as a resilient business has a culture that can adapt and evolve to any fluid marketplace.

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Customer-First Approach

The customer-first approach is a business strategy that prioritizes the needs of the customer above all else. This method puts the customer at the center of everything the company does, from product development to customer service.

The customer-first approach has become increasingly critical in recent years as companies have realized that happy customers are the key to success, especially in an ever-changing marketplace. A satisfied customer is more likely to return and do business with a company again, and they're also more likely to recommend the company to their friends, family, and network.

In today's competitive marketplace, it's more important than ever to prioritize the customer experience. The customer-first approach is the best way to ensure that your customers are happy and will keep coming back for more.

Enhancing the customer experience requires a deep understanding of your customer base and what they want and need from your product or service. Both a qualitative and quantitative approach is critical to selecting a technology that optimizes the customer experience.

This requires regular feedback and communication with customers and the ability to creatively source improvement data. This is where the right-brain thinkers can help to not only aggregate this qualitative data but also truly understand it in order to create actionable strategies.

The Rise of the Data Artists

Data has always been a hard, technical skill. But it has evolved into a new art form.

As data becomes more and more important, the need for data artists has grown. Data artists are those who can take data and turn it into something beautiful and meaningful but most importantly, business strategies that will positively impact overall ROI or profitability.

These stakeholders can see the world in data and find patterns that others might miss. They use their creativity to tell stories with data and to help others understand complex concepts or effectively forecast customer behavior.

Data artists are in high demand, as they have a rare combination of technical skills and creativity. Companies are willing to pay top dollar for data artists because they know that they can bring a unique value to their business.

KPIs / User Adoption

KPIs, or key performance indicators, are a way of measuring whether or not you're achieving your desired results. User adoption measures how well employees can use new technologies or applications. If users are not engaging with a new system, maximum business value will not be achieved and overall, the transformation will ultimately fail.

There are several reasons why user adoption is so important. First, without strong user adoption, you will not be able to achieve your desired results. Second, user adoption is necessary for a new system to be valuable to employees. Third, user adoption creates efficiencies and drives down unnecessary costs.

When faced with lagging user adoption, organizations must get creative to protect any technology investment. A solid organizational change plan and a deep study of company culture are key, as well as clear and frequent communication. Innovative thinkers can often leverage hard metrics and the human side of the equation in order most effectively understand and address any user adoption issues. 

Reduce Technical Debt

Technical debt is the term used to describe the extra work that a team has to do because they didn't do things right the first time.

For example, imagine you're building a house. You could take the time to lay a foundation and build walls that are level and plumb. Or you could take shortcuts, like using lower-quality materials or skipping steps in the process.

If you take shortcuts, you'll end up with a house that's not as strong or well-built as it could be. And, if you ever want to make changes or additions to the house, it will be much more difficult, and expensiv, than if you had done things right the first time. 

The same is true for digital transformation. If you take shortcuts, you'll end up with technology that's not as reliable or maintainable. And, if you ever need to make changes, it will be much more difficult (and again, expensive) than if you had done things right the first time.

Technical debt can be caused by several things, including a lack of understanding, inexperience, or simply trying to save time in the short term. This "lack of understanding" is where that people-based approach is critical to battling any potential technical debt and ultimately getting creative with how to overcome or (more importantly) forward-think any issues with project shortcomings.

If your team is incurring technical debt, it's important to address the problem as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more debt you'll accrue, and the harder it will be to get out of it as well as change employee behavior.

The "Whole Brain" Method

Any business transformation suggests a shift in thinking towards a more holistic, people-based approach. This "whole-brain" concept takes into account the left brain (analytical) and right brain (creative) perspectives and recognizes that both are necessary for digital transformation to be successful.

The left brain is responsible for logical, linear thinking, while the right brain manifests more creative, non-linear thinking. A left-brain perspective is needed to understand the data and make decisions about what needs to change. A right-brain perspective is needed to come up with creative solutions to problems and implement them successfully.

It's important to note that a "whole brain" approach does not mean that everyone on a digital transformation core team needs to be equally good at both left-brain and right-brain thinking. However, it is important to have a mix of people with different perspectives on the team so that all aspects of the new technology can be considered.

If you have questions about right-brain thinkers and digital transformation or just want to share your experience, please feel free to reach out to me directly. I am happy to brainstorm how to inspire creativity within your company culture.

Author:
Kyler Cheatham
Kyler Cheatham is a digital artist and innovator who is always thinking of new ways to improve the world around her. As the Global Marketing Director at Third Stage Consulting, she uses her creativity and tech-savvyness to help businesses reach their target audiences. Kyler is also a thought leader in the digital marketing space, and she loves sharing her knowledge with others. She is also a mother of two young children, which has given her a unique perspective on balancing work and family life.
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