In the current age when technology is taking over every aspect of life and business, associations must adopt and follow a digital transformation process. Organizations with outdated business models, depending more on things and people, are being passed by those using the tools of the digital age, technology and networks.
To bring about an association digital transformation, two vital groups of stakeholders must work in complete agreement. These two groups are your board of directors and your executive management team. One provides governance and manages capital allocations, while the other forms a strategy and carries out the work of your association.
In order for these important parties to buy into association digital transformation, and be willing to shift capital allocation and leadership practices to support such a new model, three key aspects must first be in place:
Understanding – Both the board and executive leadership must have a complete understanding of the targeted technology and network supported business model and why it is the best choice.
Commitment – Both parties must be completely committed to the journey of associational digital transformation and creating a new future for your organization.
Reallocation – Both parties must be willing to re-allocate the necessary time, finances, attention, and human resources to the process of digital transformation.
Then, with these pillars forming a solid foundation of leadership, the following steps can be implemented to lead the association through the process of digital transformation and into a new and bright future.
A Digital and network-based business model is structured and managed differently than the traditional association. As the board of directors and executive management team educate themselves on the new methods and structures, they can, in turn, lead the way in educating the association on the new way of operations.
Begin afresh with a clean slate and create a new digital roadmap that will lead your organization to success. Don’t let underway initiatives or projects slow the process. Also,don’t be afraid to stop projects or shift priorities to align everything with your new model.
Your existing infrastructure and talent is likely not suitable for a digital and networked future. Moreover, as you add new digital tools and networking capabilities, you will need assets who are educated and experienced in such areas.
It is highly likely that you already have human assets in your association who are passionate about the coming changes and may have already initiated some small-scale digital initiatives. You may also have other intangible assets that can be leveraged toward your digital transformation. Inventory everything and assess its fit with your new strategy.
The above steps toward association digital transformation will require changes to the structure of your organization. Major shifts may be long in coming for a variety of reasons, and are usually unhealthy in any case. Begin by making the changes you can make now, no matter how small. As momentum grows, and comfort with the changes builds, additional changes can be made.
Association digital transformation is not a simple journey. It takes vision, planning, perseverance, and the full agreement of your board and executive management team. However, any future that does not include digital transformation is folly. Cimatri can help your association make the plans and take the steps for successful digital transformation. Why not give us a call today?