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APRIL 18, 2022

Force of habit: Business as usual vs. digital leading

Is digitization an opportunity or a threat?

Everything can be ordered online. Anytime and from anywhere. We communicate globally and, thanks to translation software and artificial intelligence, even in every language. Products become services. Driving the e-scooter. Overnight stay in AirBnB. Series on Netflix. And get lost in a huge entertainment program.

Our freedoms are unlimited. But is it possible that our brain is not yet fully able to cope with this? Are we still mentally stuck in the analogue age? And do we secretly wish the good old FRG back, where everything was so simple and uncomplicated?

Yes, we all like to stick to habits. Because as long as it runs as usual, there is no threat in the form of a change.

Unfortunately, sticking to old habits also means: Digital Failed. And we would like to give you one thing with this article: The biggest threat to your business is the power of habit!

The joy of functioning

There comes a point for every entrepreneur when he realizes that there are no cute inflatable animals swimming around him, but voracious sharks. They are faster, more determined and in some things smarter. How about in terms of digital transformation.

But if this aha moment is a long time coming, the naive joy of functioning remains. And that despite the fact that more and more global companies are preparing to digitize all their work processes and thus remain competitive.

Others perceive digital processes and tools as extra work that leads to lost budgets, pressure and overtime. Maybe it's the fear of losing control or simply comfort.

And while the sharks are catching up, driven by the current and driven by their own momentum, the pustetes float comfortably on the surface of the water. But at some point the air out of them too. And then the scales fall from their eyes: they have missed digitization and have to start paddling vigorously in order not to go under.

And all it takes to catch up is a habit change.

Change as a potential threat

No matter how big your company is. If you still communicate using Post-Its, write reports by hand and meet up all the time in the meeting room instead of working in a virtual network, you are miles away from digitization. Maybe you have set up one or the other tool and now think that after the change, the matter will be settled and you now also belong to the digital natives. But you can get a lot more out of digitization. And in the future, you can drift through virtual rooms and make it clear to your team what to do from any location.

However, the prerequisite for this is the courage to change. If you are willing to invest in new technology and tools and rely on permanent further development, you will not screw it up.

It is of course understandable that you are afraid of failure and do not know how to start. But playing dead is not a solution, because either the digital wave will overtake you or the sharks will eat you.

Digitization missed: deterrent examples

To convince you, we have prepared a few deterrent examples for you - from once successful companies that have completely missed digitization.

Do you remember the high-quality cameras from Kodak, which developed at breakneck speed and always had the latest features? In fact, Kodak has long been the world leader in photographic equipment and cameras. Unfortunately, the company seemed to be thinking a little conservatively, not seeing the need to produce digital cameras (although Kodak already had a solution in the pipeline). why? After all, change is a risk...

Even the former shipping giant Quelle only realized in 2009 that it would make sense to enter online trading. Unfortunately much too late, because Amazon and ebay have long since risen to the top and made sure that Quelle had to file for bankruptcy.

Did you also own a Nokia 3310 in the 90s and were so proud of your snake record and polyphonic ringtones? Apparently Nokia was a bit too proud of its models and didn't feel the need to produce smartphones. And then came Apple. And in 2014 Nokia was finally on the brink of collapse.

Tips for your digital transformation

All these companies have one thing in common: they are long-established and rely on what has always worked quite well. The ideal concept behind it: constant growth with the tried and tested. But that's not how it works in business, because a successful and innovative company is digital these days. And processes that cannot yet be digitized today will be in the future. Using digital tools is the new norm!

So that you don't miss the connection, we would like to give you a few tips on your way.

Strategy and Funding

Of course, a digital transition requires more budget, work and patience to invest. Therefore, of course, you need careful planning and sophisticated strategies to take the necessary steps. Be aware: this costs time and money at first, but will pay off in the long run.

Assistance

The fact is: in order to advance your digital transformation, you need excellent support. Find someone you can rely on who knows your industry and integrate them into your team and your processes. In this way, your new digital expert can not only uncover digital weaknesses, but also find out which solutions make work easier for your entire team.

Teamwork

Your team should also be actively involved in all decisions. Always make your employees feel like they are a valuable part of the transformation process and listen up when they come up with new ideas.

Tools

Choose industry-specific tools that make your projects progress faster and more efficiently. Whether communication, organization or administration - with the right tool you can standardize processes and reduce the administrative effort enormously. Your decisions will be more precise and you will save yourself time-consuming checks.

This in turn means that your employees gain more responsibility, motivation and self-confidence.

Technology

A reliable power supply, a stable internet connection, huge storage capacities and regular backups - don't forget that your IT department also needs to be expanded to withstand digital change.

Speed

The greatest weakness of companies lies in the slow implementation of digital transformation. Whether blockages, fear or the power of habit are behind it is irrelevant. Only one thing is important: get going and deal with new trends and innovations in order to soon be one of the digital leaders.

Conclusion: everything is possible!

For a digital transformation, people, processes and tools must harmonize perfectly with each other. Forms a unit where everything is possible - digitized accounting, communication via mobile apps and data transfer in the cloud.

Yes, it is tedious to define new processes and technological solutions. And yes, it requires a new mindset on all levels. And yes, suddenly positioning yourself as cool, innovative and digital takes courage.

But you will make it. Proceed step by step and see the digital transformation as an ongoing process. Because you don't have to change everything overnight. Your needs are always more important than following every trend.

Don't think about augmented reality if your customer service doesn't already work through robo-chat. Don't dream of artificial intelligence when your office is overflowing with stacks of paper. Be realistic. Become aware of what is feasible for your company and don't lose your footing. Because otherwise you go under. Like a bloat that suddenly loses air.

Now it's time to rethink. Benefits need change and change is in full swing. It's up to you what you make of it. But never forget your initial vision.

Do you need help?

If your head is spinning and you are wondering where to start, we would like to support you as a sparring partner. We know which systems can be linked. How to establish an online presence. And which processes can make your everyday work easier.

We also have the guts to tell you which features cost way too much or are just crap for your business. 

We not only take you by the hand, but also your employees and customers. Let's take the digital transformation together and not lag far behind.