Tom Shannon: Two Steps Toward a Digital Organization




How can businesses best address digital innovation? Tom Shannon, a leader in Bain's Industrial Goods & Services practice and founder of the firm's global Chemicals practice, discusses the two things that companies need to do first when looking to become a digital organization.

Read the transcript below.

TOM SHANNON: There's probably two things businesses need to do first, and I would say this is probably truer of the businesses that I deal with, which are more in the industrial and more the B2B end of the spectrum, and who are just beginning to feel the effects of the digital challenges.

The first is building an awareness of the extent of the challenge. How significant are the digital trends in their businesses? I think the answer to that question is usually a lot more significant than they currently understand them to be. And so it's building awareness among the leadership team and broadly among the company. That's the first need.

The second need is to begin to think about the organizational and capability implications of this. Who do I mobilize? How do I mobilize them? Where do they sit in the organization? What sort of tensions does that create with the more established parts of the organization that are dealing in the more traditional and terrestrial end of the spectrum?

So I think those are the two biggest needs.

Interactive graphic: How will digital disruption affect your industry?