Leadership on any project starts at the top, leaders have to carry a torch that other people will follow. They set the standard that everybody must reach.
At my previous company, I was part of a sales transformation, 2,000 sales people and 2,000 pre-sales people needed to change direction from On Premise Salespeople where sales took 18 months and salespeople didn't need to close. To Cloud / SaaS salespeople where sales could take 6 weeks and we knew that competition closed at the first meeting.
We created something called "first meeting excellence" this would be delivered at the first meeting by everybody. It was part white board (with storyboard) and part "swipe" demo on an iPad. No power point.
It was very simple, every sales person would be shown the white board presentation, given an iPad and trained on this. At that point, the Sales VP (quite rightly) stepped forward and said, this will fail. He said, call a meeting, get all the sales people to attend and I will present the new white board and iPad demo. And he did. We coached and coached him, and he was brilliant.
From a roll out that probably would have seen 20% take up, there was 60% take up and the sales and quality of pipeline changed overnight. Of course, people started to move back to using Power Point, but the Sales VP at all QBRs tested people. When word got around, take up went to 70%.
In any change program, there has to be leadership from the front. Too many people shy away from it or won't mention it to their bosses. We ran a social strategy session for a company this week and all of the management team were there bar one. You may have seen the photo on LinkedIn. This team will make massive changes with the leadership team leading the way. I've already had competitors come to me and ask them what they are doing. It must be scary for them! But powerful for our clients.
They remain true to their vision: Sure, technology will change. But your company’s values and vision should never waver. As a leader, you should bring order to the chaos of digital transformation by providing a clear and solid foundation of values that everyone in the company—including yourself—uphold. As long as the technology fits into those values—and you can communicate their purpose accordingly—you’ll be a long way toward driving digital transformation success. (After all, you should only be adopting new technologies that truly support that vision and values.)