The advancing digitalization is based on different cultural principles, which show what is important in a digital corporate culture. In addition to collaboration and creativity, the maxims include user centricity and fail-fast thinking.
Digitization is more than technology. Digital transformation can only succeed if employees live and internalize the principles of digitization. Digital change in traditional companies is therefore above all a major change management programme.
It is not for nothing that the Design Thinking methodology is a tried and tested instrument often used in many current change processes. It embodies many facets that make up digital corporate culture. Four decisive principles of digitalization can be recognized in this way of thinking and proceeding:
1. collaboration as the key to creativity
Creativity arises primarily in the interaction between people. It is precisely the interdisciplinary composition of teams from different areas of the company that brings different perspectives together and allows new ideas to emerge.
The placement of silo thinkers and the cooperation to develop solutions across company and industry boundaries plays a decisive role in the transformation in order to develop new services and take up the speed of development.
2. the focus is on the user
The user is in the center of the definition of the problem and the solution finding with Design Thinking. A company with a digital corporate culture questions its wishes, needs and behaviors. This point seems self-evident in the development of solutions. Nevertheless, interaction with end customers is an unfamiliar discipline in projects. Especially in the case of assembled expert groups from specialist areas, IT and external consultants, a changed self-image is necessary in order to make the decision for a solution dependent on feedback from the customer.
3. learning from mistakes – the fail-fast idea
The increasing speed of change in the course of digitalization brings with it uncertainty. Companies are coping with this uncertainty by experimenting. In workshops, whether design thinking or other formats, fast and simple prototypes are built, tested and, if necessary, discarded. Failure is deliberately intended in order to learn from it.
In everyday project work, these insights, whether success or failure, are often achieved only after long conception, development and market launch phases. Prototyping, however, can significantly reduce the investment risk for innovations. Early failure is therefore a decisive added value in order to develop optimal solutions. This should be anchored in the culture of the success-oriented corporate world.
4 Digitisation is fun!
Those who shape the future need have no fear of it. Digitalisation creates many new technologies, methods and cooperations that can lead to new and innovative solutions. Just as in design thinking formats, companies should consciously put the fun of change in the foreground and encourage it. Understanding change as an opportunity and digitalization as a positive aspect in order to optimize companies is the central success factor of digital transformation.
Transforming Design Thinking into Corporate Design Thinking
Such an enormous cultural change requires new approaches, but not only: In order for Design Thinking to become Corporate Design Thinking, companies have to clarify many questions: about the composition of teams, about spatial design and organization, about leadership support or incentives. It is important to start with courage and to achieve a change of consciousness by repeating new approaches. Only when the outlined principles are intuitively and automatically anchored in the thinking and acting of the entire company and the people involved can real innovations and long-term success be achieved.