Digital disruption – get on top of it

Lots of talk about digital disruption. Deloitte has published “Harnessing the bang – stories from the digital frontline”.  (Repeated since it was partly lost last time – and it is valuable.)
They asked four market-leading and very different organisations on the frontline of digital disruption in the Short fuse, big bang quadrant to share their successes and their learnings, as they continue to deal with their digital transformation from disruption.     
Customers are leading the data and digital revolution. They are more empowered than ever to tell businesses what they want. Those businesses that listen – and appreciate the intellectual-property value of their customer base – are the ones that are responding successfully to digital disruption and staying ahead of the pack. Westfield’s Director of Shopping Centre Management, Andy Hedges concluded: “Not enough businesses in Australia understand the threat from digital disruption. Too many are internally focused.”

Culture change
The ‘people’ piece is big. Implicit in all of these stories is the need to engage an organisation’s people in the digital transformation journey. This begins with buy-in at the most senior levels of an organisation. Support at the C-suite level is crucial. Strong CEO support sends the message that digital transformation is being taken seriously.


Telstra says collegiality among peers is absolutely critical in such a large complex organisation to ensure that everyone knows that they are all working towards the same goal.
Internal social networking tools are becoming increasingly important for communicating change in a timely manner to all levels of the business.


AustralianSuper reported having underestimated the amount of ‘storytelling’ needed to help those not directly involved with the digital transformation project to understand and visualise the future.

For UBank, the culture story was about creating a business identity. It was about leveraging the support of its parent company NAB, while setting itself free to become a new entity. Casual dress codes and dedicated UBank office spaces helped on the journey.

At Westfield, the cultural change was all about being change agile and multi-dextrous. Combining a culture of highly detailed bricks and mortar projects with long gestations, with more rapidly formed online marketplaces, involves very different methodologies. Westfield continues to invest in market-leading digital natives and re-tooling existing people with digital capabilities.


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Eric Winton

Director, New Millennium Business

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