By Arka Dhar, Zinier
In 2012, Procter & Gamble set out to become the “most digital company on the planet.”
The consumer goods giant invested heavily in new technologies and advanced analytics, hoping to transform every aspect of its operations – from the way it managed relationships with retailers to the way it created molecules in its R&D labs.
It failed. Between a broad vision that lacked purpose and a slumping economy, the initiative was doomed from the start. Costs soared, profits plummeted, and within six months the CEO was asked to resign by the board.
Today, we view Procter & Gamble’s failed digital transformation as a cautionary tale. Done right, digitization can drive productivity, replace legacy systems, and future-proof your business. But if the right pieces aren’t in place, no amount of capital or brand power will help you brute force an effective transformation.
Here are five of the most common digital transformation mistakes – and how you can avoid them.
1. Lacking a clear purpose
Procter & Gamble might have been successful if they focused on a few core areas of their sprawling business. Digital transformations should not be siloed, but keeping everyone involved does not mean changing everything at once.
Transformation for the sake of transformation is almost always destined to fail. It may be exciting to think about new technology, but any effort you undertake should be grounded in strategy, support a specific business objective, and consider external factors such as market pressures or the competition.