How to lead a digital transformation — ethically – ClearTips

How to lead a digital transformation — ethically – TechCrunch

The fact is that COVID-19 has accelerated the need for digital transformation in almost all areas. What companies are doing to promote success under the circumstances. However, How They do it has managed to find a place in the shadows.

Simply put, the explosive growth in innovation and adoption of digital solutions should not be allowed to take place at the expense of ethical considerations.

It is about morality – but it is also about the bottom line. Stakeholders, both internal and external, are increasingly intolerant of companies that blur (or ignore) moral lines. These realities add to the need for leaders to adopt an all-new learning curve: how to engage in digital transformation that includes ethics by design.

Simply put, the explosive growth in innovation and adoption of digital solutions should not be allowed to take place at the expense of ethical considerations.

Ethics as ethics is asking for problems

It is easy to rail against the evils of executive lifestyle or golden parachuting, but more often than not, a pattern of ethics violations stems from the company’s culture and not from leadership alone. Ideally, employees act ethically because it aligns with their personal values. However, at the very least, they must understand the risk that an ethical violation represents the organization.

In my experience, those conversations are not being conducted. Call it poor communication or lack of foresight, but most companies rarely address ethical risks – at least not openly. If those discussions occur, they are usually between members of the upper management, behind closed doors.

Why don’t ethical concerns get “town hall” treatment? The answer may come reluctantly to let traditional thinking about the business hierarchy. This may be related to the positive (strong and ironic, toxic) cultural message that rules positiveness. In this case: I have told leaders that they want to create a culture of disruptive thinking – just immediately tell an employee who speaks that they “lack a growth mindset.”

What is the answer, then? There are three solutions I’ve found to be effective:

  1. Making ethics the core value of the organization.
  2. Embracing Transparency.
  3. Develop strategies to deal with ethical challenges and violations.

These simple solutions are a great starting point for addressing ethics issues in digital transformation and beyond. They see leaders at the heart of the company and make decisions that will affect the organization for years to come.

Interpersonal mobility is a concern in the digital transformation field

Digital transformation is, by nature, a technical operation. It requires personnel with advanced and diverse expertise in areas such as AI and data operations. Leaders in the digital transformation space are expected to have sufficient cross-domain capability to deal with difficult problems.

This is the big question – bringing technically minded people together can easily create an arrogance of expertise, which leaves people who are not intimidated and unwilling to ask questions.

Digital transformation is not just about infrastructure or equipment. This, regarding change management, and a multifaceted approach is needed to ensure a healthy transition. The biggest mistake companies can make is that only technical experts should be on the table. As a result the constructed silos transform into echo chambers – the last place you want to converse about morality.

In a hurry to go digital, however technical the problem may be, the solution will still be fundamentally human-centric.

Ethical digital transformation needs a starting point

Not all moral imperatives related to digital transformation are as debatable as the suggestion that it should be people first; Some are very black and white, like you have to start somewhere to get anywhere.

Fortunately, “somewhere” should not be from scratch. Government, Risk and Compliance (GRC) standards can be used to create a highly structured framework that is mostly closed to interpretation and provides a sound basis for creating and adopting digital solutions.

The utility of the GRC model applies equally to startup multinationals and offers more than just a playbook; Thoughtful application of GRC standards can also help with leadership assessment, progress reports, and risk analysis. Think about using a bowling bumper – they won’t guarantee you a strike roll, but they will definitely keep the ball out of the gutter.

Of course, a given company may not know how to build a GRC-based framework (just like most of us would be at a disadvantage if tasked with building a set of bowling bumpers). This is why there are many diversions for the prefab foundation to providers such as IBM OpenPage, COBIT and ITIL. These “starter kits” all share the same goal: Identify policies and controls that are relevant to your industry or organization and draw lines from critical points for those in need.

Although beginning with the GRC process is typically cloud-based and at least partially automated, it requires the organization’s input and transparency. It cannot be run effectively by specific departments, or in a strictly top-down fashion. In fact, the most important thing to understand about implementing GRC standards is that it will be Almost certainly fail Unless the leadership and broader culture of an organization are fully supported in the direction in which it points.

An ethics-first mindset protects employees And Bottom-line

Today’s leaders – executives, entrepreneurs, influencers, and more – cannot be concerned with just “winning” the digital race. Arguably, the change is more of a marathon than a sprint, but either way, technology matters. In pursuing the ultimate goal of competitive advantage, how and why matters just as much.

This is true for all weapons of an organization. Internal stakeholders such as owners and employees risk their careers and reputation by tolerating a peripheral approach to ethics. External stakeholders such as customers, investors and suppliers have just enough to lose. Their mutual understanding of this fact is behind the collective, cross-industry push for transparency.

We have all seen a massive setback in the public eye against individuals and brands that allow moral gaps on their watch. It is impossible to completely eliminate the risk of experiencing something similar, but it There is a risk that can be managed. The danger lies in letting the “technical blinds” of digital change interfere with your idea of ​​the big picture.

Companies that want to mitigate that risk and raise the challenges of the digital age in a truly ethical way, starting with just having a conversation about what it means to have ethics, transparency, and inclusivity in and around the organization Will have to do. They need to follow those conversations with necessary action and with an open mind across the board.

It is smart to be concerned about innovation gaps in a time when the enterprise is growing and growing faster than ever, but it is time to form all reasonable ethical considerations. Failing to do so will get you down the line.

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