What Reinventors Know. Part 4: The importance of culture

By | 4 minute read | March 16, 2018

If you’ve been keeping up with the earlier parts of this series, you’ll know that Reinventors are agile and future-focused. Reinventors build emerging technologies into their business strategy to help achieve future strategic goals. They prepare for a future of increased intelligence and automation. They understand intrinsically that platforms are the key to better data usage but also new business opportunity.  But perhaps most importantly, they are masters at the art of managing change within their organizations, by creating a culture of transparent leadership, open communication and trust.

Creating a clear, shared vision

By and large, humans fear the unknown. That’s probably why we don’t particularly like change: because we don’t know what it will lead to. However, change is often a good and necessary thing, particularly when it brings new opportunities and more effective ways of working.

Reinventors are masters at managing change because they involve their staff closely in their vision. They empower them by sharing information, promoting collaboration and offering transparency and trust. Under their leadership, the prospect of change is transformed from something unknown or threatening, to a shared vision, brought to life by collective and collaborative effort.

It's about culture, not just about skills

Reinventors promote an inclusive culture

A clear vision enables agility

A clearly designed and communicated IoT strategy is enabling for entire enterprise – from plant workers to executives. It provides a blueprint for the future by defining desired outcomes right from the start, and allows those outcomes to be translated to behaviors. When every member of the organization understands and shares this vision, it empowers them to create, invent, design and implement.

Reinventors trust and enable their people. Within the confines of a clearly articulated strategic vision, they build a fluid work structure that has wiggle room for trial and error. An agile approach that encourages strong experimentation practices opens the way to greater creativity. When teams are aligned to an experimentation mindset, they expect a degree of failure as part of the logical processes, so they are free to innovate boldly – as long as it can be tested and results can be examined for learning and improvement.

According to the IBV’s Global C-suite study, 74% of Reinventors exhibit iterative practices like rapid prototyping, envisioning, creation, trial and scale. They also encourage knowledge and skill sharing through cross-functional teams that collaborate on joint outcomes.

Reinventors reward fast failure

Reinventors learn from fast failure

Managing an evolving workforce

It’s no secret that the convergence of new technologies and intelligent machines is changing the workplace. An enterprise that embraces IoT and AI technologies will look to automate repetitive tasks to save time through process automation – reducing human error and cutting costs. It can also make the most of time-sensitive IoT data by using Artificial Intelligence and machine learning to extract insights in real-time to drive more informed human decisions, too.

As these technologies become more robust, there will be knock-on effect for human staff. It’s inevitable that responsibilities will change. So how do Reinventors manage the changing landscape within their organizations? And how do they ensure human workers continue to be valued?

Reinventors understand that the roles of human staff will evolve – to create value in a new way. Human workers will be freed from mundane tasks so that they can take on more high-value responsibilities. By identifying the convergence points between technology’s capabilities and a human’s particular skills, we can start to see new job opportunities emerge.

Augmenting capabilities

While machines are excellent at scanning, sifting and analyzing data, for example, they lack empathy, compassion or imagination. These uniquely human attributes mean human workers are better placed to manage the higher-level decisions. It will be their responsibility to understand insights driven by AI and machine learning and interpret them into actions that move the business forward. They will be needed for high-value tasks associated with leveraging AI solutions and machine learning capabilities through training models.

As roles and responsibilities shift, Reinventors will need equip engineers, developers and operations to deal with unprecedented technological development. They support their staff with training and development opportunities, to help them remain competitive and, crucially, expect them to have a say in the future of their role. Reinventors ensure that their staff understand that they still have a valuable place in a changing workforce.

The result? Empowered staff who take ownership of their development, contribution and shared vision for the future.

Meet the Reinventors at THINK 2018

You can learn more about how Reinventors are creating a culture of digital reinvention at Think 2018. Think is a first-of-its-kind business and technology event taking place in Las Vegas from 19-22 March. Join us there to hear how our clients and partners are realizing their IoT goals with Watson. We can help you start your own digital reinvention journey, too.

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