Nothing is more frustrating than stubborn management entangled in dated workflows and inefficient processes. That’s why we created “Digital Adaptation”, a new practical book on how to help senior management understand the Web and adapt the business, culture, team structure and workflows accordingly.
The web has changed the rules of business. The best practices of the industrial economy no longer apply in the digital age. What was once safe ground is no longer so, and organizations need to adapt.
Sector after sector have been transformed by the new digital economy. Newspapers have found advertising revenue and readership evaporate, music retailers have shut their door in the face of digital downloads, and companies like Blockbuster have been supplanted by digital offerings such as Netflix. To think your sector will be an exception is to under-estimate the profound impact of the web on society and business. It will not be long before new post-digital companies begin to disrupt your sector, too.
This book provides practical guidelines on how to help you adapt the business, culture, teams and workflows to embrace the full potential of the web. No fluff, no theory — just techniques and strategies that worked in practice, and showed results.
If you’ve got enough of your co-workers not understanding the Web, Digital Adaptation is just what you need — ideas and concepts that you can put in front of senior management to make real changes.
In the book we will explore how we need to move from being implementors to consultants, helping senior management understand this new medium and adapt their business accordingly.
The foreword introduces the purpose of the book and explains why we decided to choose you as the audience for it. In fact, the book is written primarily for you as web professionals. A book you can quote to senior management and make real, lasting changes in your organization. Your job is to take the concepts covered in this book and put them in front of senior management.
The core problem with digital, faced by many large organizations, is that they were formed before the web as we know it today existed. Their systems, processes, and (in many cases) people are not configured to support it. In this chapter, Paul discusses warning signs of digital incompatibility in your company, organizational and cultural barriers and changes that the new digital landscape has brought. This is a chapter of how most organizations struggle with their digital strategy and what you have to know to avoid the problems in a long run.
As Richard Rumelt said, “good strategy works by focusing energy and resources on one or a very few pivotal objectives whose accomplishment will lead to a cascade of favorable outcomes.” In this chapter, you’ll learn how to select the right digital direction and how to deal with prioritization paralysis. Backed up by case studies and real-world examples, you’ll also learn how to form a digital strategy and how to use guiding principles, digital policies, and a responsibility matrix to complement the strategy. The chapter also explains how reorganizing teams and processes will help tackle dated, inefficient departmental structures.
Forming a digital strategy is one thing, but making it work requires changes in the digital culture. This chapter discusses main components of a digital culture, including collaboration, agile development, digital by default, innovation and service-oriented culture. The web can’t be neatly separated from the rest of organization; what’s necessary is a single organizational strategy that is heavily influenced by online. This chapter explains just how such a strategy can be established in practice.
There are various ways in which digital teams can be organised, but some approaches are more effective than others. This chapter discusses how to build an effective team and what role it should have, as well as how to find a good digital lead and attract and retain appropriate digital staff. Sometimes the digital team can feel like a Ping-Pong ball that ricochets around the organization—you are never quite sure where it will end up. This chapter explains the place, the position and the working environment of an effective digital team.
There is no shortage of big digital failures, from the London Olympics website to the Healthcare.gov website. The costs are staggering and the impacts devastating. The more complex and ambitious a digital project, the more traditional management approaches will struggle to scale. This chapter explores why digital projects fail and how you can minimize the risk of this happening by identifying and prioritizing user needs and involving the entire digital team in the conversation. Of course, this would work best within an iterative and collaborative context in which failure, prototyping and experimentation are deeply rooted within the digital culture.
Anybody can instigate change. As somebody working at the grassroots level of your organization’s digital strategy, you are a key catalyst of change. That work begins in your own team. You can plant the seeds of change by establishing good team-working relationships and atmosphere, enforcing good working practices, building bridges with colleagues and educating them, approaching management strategically, and being disruptive. If you don’t take action to change it, nobody else will. But if you do take action, there is a real opportunity to make your work more enjoyable and to have a real impact on your company.
If you have any questions, we are right here to answer them. We love our customers, and we’d love to help you in any way or just listen to your story. So please feel free to ask questions via Twitter @smashingmag — we’ll get back to you right away. Just in case: here are answers to some frequently asked questions.
No shipping costs — wherever you are in the world! We ship everywhere, worldwide, via airmail shipping. What you see is what you pay.
That’s it, everyone! We sincerely appreciate your support and trust, and we’ll make sure to deliver the book to you as soon as possible. Cheers!