Most organisations have embraced digital technologies to the extent that some aspects of the business are now reliant on IT. Some organisations in recognition of emerging trends have put the mobile ‘app’ at the centre of their business strategy.
But most of these organisations are still running industrial business models, using new technologies to do old things in new ways.
Digital businesses on the other hand look to do new things in new ways.
Such businesses also have the following characteristics:
- They don’t recruit using job specifications. They build the business around the strengths of the people they have access to.
- Their senior management team are not fantasists imagining that once they have created a strategic plan nature and the market will simply get out of the way.
- They fail fast and thus learn and evolve fast.
- They operate more like a swarm of bees in that they embrace situational awareness, collaboration and real-time decision making as part of their daily activities.
- The boundary between the organisation and the market is blurred.
- They major in information management and minor in information technology management.
- Their people are more akin to artists than compliant organic business cogs.
So be aware that just because your organisation has embraced IT and your staff are e-skilled, this does not guarantee that you are well positioned for the digital economy.
At best you have a hi-tech factory.