5 Questions Boards Should Be Asking About Digital Transformation - René Lumley Hall

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I recently read an article published in the Harvard Business Review, 5 Questions Boards Should Be Asking About Digital Transformation, by Celia Huber, Alex Sukharevsky, and Rodney Zemmel. As a transformation leader, I have always been interested in how new technologies shift consumer expectations, challenge norms, and put pressure on organizations to keep up with trends. The pace at which technology is transforming is fascinating.

Digital transformation is widening the scope of responsibility present to corporate boards. New mandates for risk and competition have opened up — forcing boards to take a fresh range of things into consideration — ranging from digital transformation to innovative technology and incorporating it in the right way.

The article opens by discussing an anecdote — how a CEO of a large retail organization brought a $500 million digital-transformation investment plan to his board. However, after closely analyzing the proposition, the board was unable to fully evaluate it and draw a constructive conclusion. It is surprising to see that incidents like this are widespread in boardrooms around the globe.

Leadership, the C-Suite, and boards around the world have addressed the growing importance of digital transformation — especially after the onset of the pandemic, but the implementation of these is what people struggle with. The article goes on to discuss 5 questions that boards should be asking about digital transformation -

1.Does the board understand the implications of digital and technology well enough to provide valuable guidance?

2. Is the digital transformation fundamentally changing how the business (and sector) creates value?

3. How does the board know if the digital transformation is working?

4. Does the board have a sufficiently expansive view of talent?

5. Does the board have a clear view of emerging threats?

“Digital is what we’re going to be doing for the rest of our lives,” one executive is fond of saying. The urgency and longevity that underlie that statement make supporting a successful digital transformation job number one for boards. As the pressures and complexities of digital increase, boards have a key role to play in guiding their institutions through successful, long-term digital transformations.”

If you’d like to dig in a bit further, you can find the original article

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