Digital transformation Chatter Report: Mobility, CMO’s and leadership

The most influential and regular voices in the digital transformation debate dominated this week’s Chatter Report with contributions from R Ray Wang, MIT Sloan, Forbes, Tim Hughes, KPMG and Gartner all proving to be important kick starters to the conversations this week.

But it was actually a post about a presentation by British Liberal Democrat polly and Business Secretarty Vince Cable that generated the most noise. Cable was speaking at a conference about the impact of digital transformation on Europe.

Unfortunately the original tweet that kicked it all off contained no real content – apart from a pic of Cable speaking at The Lisbon Council, however through the miracle of Google you can get the gist of his remarks here.

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Each weekday the KINSHIP digital/Which-50 Chatter Report identifies the most influential conversation-starters of the last week across the global social realm, and once a week we focus on digital disruption and transformation.

This week there were 8667  mentions of the terms we track, up slightly on last week.

In his remarks Cable said that businesses and consumers across Europe were being let down by the “patchwork” approach to the digital economy across Europe. Calling for the creation of a digital single market, he said, “Not only would this boost UK and Eurozone economies by €340 billion but it will make online prices fairer, enable startups to be formed within 24 hours, and help businesses sell throughout the EU.”

Among the points he made;

  • an ‘online’ single market alongside the offline single market could boost EU GDP by €340 billion
  • all 500 million people in EU should be able to purchase European goods and services online, without unfair discrimination
  • all online streaming services such as Netflix should be portable within the EU


Back across the pond the digital double act of MIT Sloan and Constellation Reserach’s R Ray Wang (with the former tweeting the latter) highlighted the importance of the next wave of smart mobility. “Why The 3rd Generation Of Enterprise Mobile Is Designed For Digital Transformation” is a blog by Wang in which he argues;

Mobile initiatives provide an entry point into digital.  Mobile first is more than a mantra.  Why?  By applying design thinking to solving specific and purposeful tasks and processes, organizations can rethink the digital journey with mobile projects.  More importantly, mobile enables organizations to break the silos of existing systems from mainframes to on-premises systems and bring new life to legacy applications usage.

Forbes meanwhile revisited the CIO/CMO argument (because let’s face it, that story hasn’t been written far too many times already). The article is actually a reprint from the Sungard AS blog where Kristiopher Spadea says “When it comes to transformation (digital or otherwise), initial and ongoing executive sponsorship is essential. Without this support and oversight, department heads are unlikely to take the lead in any digital transformation project, nor will they typically deal with budgetary constraints for what is essentially an unsanctioned project.”

Blogger and Oracle exec Tim Hughes (blogging from his personal account) shared a link to a piece written by Chatter Report regular Dion Hincliffe called “How leaders can address the challenges of digital transformation.” 

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Hincliffe identfiies what he describes as the biggest challenge facing digital transformation programs, “the root issue is actually the way organizations apportion leadership and responsibility for digital change.”

In recent years, as the imperative became obvious to even the casual observer (see Constellation Research’s latest CXO priorities survey), I’ve seen digital change land squarely into the lap of the top leaders in the C-Suite. Now, I thought, we’re going to see some changes, even though anecdotally, most of the major successes I’ve seen — and there are quite a few we can point to now — have often been unceasing struggles against entrenched powers, against nay-sayers, the skeptical, the beholden to the status quo, and holders of turf and fiefdoms who all feel impacted negatively (they believe) by the major changes that now simply must happen in most organizations.

Finally, KPMG pointed to a Youtube video describing its soon to be released – and new and improved – digital platform while Gartner linked to a page for its Enterprise Information & Master Data Management Summit

About the authors

Mike Green is the CEO of KINSHIP digital. Andrew Birmingham is the editor and publisher of Which-50.

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Kinship Digital is a corporate member of the Which-50 Digital Intelligence Unit. Members contribute their expertise and insights to Which-50 for the benefit of our senior executive audience. Membership fees apply.

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