We hear it nearly every day: Digitalization is changing every single industry. Most of us understand that if we continue to focus only on the ways that we’ve always done business, we’ll miss the train, and it’s an important one.
This train is moving at lightning speed while we’re desperately trying to catch up in our underpowered car. The train is called digital innovation. But what does it mean to drive digital innovation? How can I expand the kinds of offerings that the IoT marketplace wants? How can I address a broader set of customers and offer innovative solutions?
Most companies have understood that if they don’t come up with new ideas and business models, they won’t survive. In my experience, however, many companies are still struggling to find out what’s required in order to succeed in such an uncertain environment.
The companies I’ve had the honor to work with on their digital innovation journey over the past several years approached this challenge from different angles. Some are focusing their efforts on startup methods, for example, Eric Ries’ definition of a lean startup; or how Alexander Osterwarlder gets a whole business model on one sheet of paper. Other companies approached it from an IT standpoint, and in their first step worked to develop a custom IoT reference architecture.
Some of the approaches listed above worked well but didn’t deliver the outcomes expected; or even worse, they generated more uncertainty and ambiguity that ultimately confused many people in the organization. After some years in this arena, I’ve seen at least three main building blocks that are required in order to successfully navigate the digital transformation in industrial companies.
Drive cultural change
Make failure an option (because if things aren’t failing, you’re not innovating enough) and remove worries by discussing the worst-case scenario.
Join forces with a global IoT platform provider you trust
Get your team to immediately start working with the digital data derived from your assets and/or design, construction, or manufacturing processes instead of trying to become a IoT platform provider yourself: This isn’t your focus area.
Build mixed teams
Consisting of your domain experts with digital transformation ambassadors – to come up with new ideas and business models.
The sequence of these steps is key to successfully driving digital innovations and expanding your offerings for the IoT marketplace.
Explore your way to digitalization in the world of IoT