Who has heard the word "digitization" used in the last 24 hours, raise your hand.

Although we can't tell whether you actually have your hand raised at the moment, our strong suspicion is that you do. (Unless you are feeling shy about sticking your hand in the air.)

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Digitization is pervasive:


– It affects how we as humans live, work, communicate, and consume products and services

– It affects how organizations operate: established best practices change, new competition from start-ups and the tech players, drastic shifts in customer preferences, new phenomena like ecosystems, etc. further complicate the situation

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All these trends have gained momentum over the last few years – and they are quite sector- and geography-agnostic.

Nevertheless, we find that surprisingly few firms have a clear view on how to best navigate the change.

All of them will, however, need to rethink their business. More often than not, this is tied to the execution of a digital transformation.

Sprinkling a bit of “digital glitter” over incumbents’ core businesses does not suffice.

Instead, careful thought needs to be given to how the traditional core of the organization can benefit from digitization and, at the same time, new (digital) ways of value creation and capture ought to be explored.

Thus, the operating model has to allow the continued pursuit of primary business activities, which will still yield the majority of revenues for the time being, while making way for the new digital business.

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- Inspired by Tarde, 1903

This is the balance any digital transformation will need to strike to be deemed successful — and we tell you how.


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