Chapter 10Are You “Digitally Determined” or “Digitally Distraught”?

Executive Summary: Digital transformation requires more than grit, tenacity, and optimism. You need a single strategy to guide the multiple components of transformation in a holistic and coherent manner across the enterprise. A transformational strategy must be your North Star across the enterprise; transformations that are limited to lines of business or functional areas of the organization are unlikely to deliver the desired results.

A recent memorial honoring the armed forces on the 75th anniversary of D-Day brought to mind the tremendous ingenuity of the Allied forces. Their creativity, imagination, and willingness to innovate changed the course of World War II. They were truly brilliant and fearless in their approach. Many paid the ultimate price, yet they will be long remembered for their struggle to liberate a continent and restore freedom to millions of people.

I visited the WWII museum in New Orleans not too long ago, and reflected on the terrible paradox of war, which brings out the worst and the best in humanity. Focusing on the best of outcomes, the war motivated people to innovate in thousands of ways, both big and small. From their efforts sprang better antibiotics, advanced forms of surgery, pressurized aircraft cabins, microwave ovens, and practical electronic computers. Their innovation launched an economic revolution that changed the world.

Seventy-five years later we are seeing a similar ...

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