By: Kathy Kent Toney, President of Kent Business Solutions
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels
The road to digital transformation is littered with many disastrous results. Countless companies begin their transformation journeys with high hopes and grand plans yet often don't achieve their goals. But then, there's another end of the spectrum where companies know projects will fail from the very beginning!
Check this out: a series of studies conducted by several heavy hitters (the likes of McKinsey, Oxford University, and KPMG) revealed that 70% of all respondents said they knew an IT project they were about to start would fail from the onset.
With all these grim realities, how does a business leader ensure success from the onset? One way to go about it is preventing those things that could go wrong.
Along those lines, here are the three top reasons why digital transformation initiatives fail, all from a people perspective:
1. Wrong Mindsets
Good mojo flows down from the top of an organization, and if the CEO isn't supportive of transformative IT initiatives, success will be hard to achieve. So it's essential to have support from the top.
Also, when companies continue to keep employees on board who are resistant to change and can sabotage change efforts, this can cause problems.
2. Wrong Culture
If an organization has too many siloed departments and collaboration is minimal, IT projects are destined to fail. It's essential to establish an atmosphere of cooperation. When an organization can foster an attitude that everyone can win with the proposed new technology, that's a game-changer. If there aren't effective change management systems in place along those lines, end-user acceptance will suffer.
Finally, if management does a poor job of encouraging an environment where team members are free to be themselves and can voice feedback without repercussions, chances for success are minimized.
3. Wrong Talent
Not having the right talent mix for your team can impede your efforts. For instance, a team leader who doesn’t do a good job assessing their internal human capital and filling skill gaps will suffer in the end. Also, when team leaders don't include team members during the interview process with prospective hires, the potential for friction in the team increases. You want to ensure new members can easily integrate into the team.
One undervalued idea is having highly skilled people on your team who have experienced firsthand failed initiatives. That way, they can bring their expertise and prior knowledge of what doesn't work on projects.
I've only scratched the surface of three possible reasons digital transformation efforts can fail, all from the people side of things. So, there's so much more to learn! In our upcoming digital transformation e-book, Michael Cantu' and I detail what it takes to ensure project success.
Speaking of that, Michael and I hope to publish our e-book soon! In the meantime, if you have any questions about digital transformation, we'd love to hop on a Zoom or phone call. Click the button below to get that scheduled.