From ‘Yesterday’ To ‘Hope For The Future’: Demystify Digital Transformation Like A Rock Icon

Paul Kurchina

I was fortunate to see Paul McCartney in concert this year as part of his “One on One” tour. Needless to say, his performance was remarkable. But it also made me think: How does McCartney manage to mesmerize the generation that first discovered him nearly 60 years ago, as well as the three generations that follow it?

Some say it’s his love of music itself. And while this is true, something he said to Rolling Stone about his latest collaboration, “Hope for the Future,” for the popular video game Destiny gave a sense that his dedication goes deeper than that:

“When you’re writing something like ‘Hope for the Future,’ which is custom made, it is like doing a portrait for someone. You have to use your imagination and work out what they need, what they’re going to want, and then what you want to give them. Then you’ve got to combine those three things into something that you still think maintains integrity.”

Yes, even McCartney understands that a keen focus on the customer is an important part of his thinking and craft. So if a music icon and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer can transform his product to stay relevant to the masses, why shouldn’t you do the same?

Is your business ready for a digital revolution?

How did he manage to do this for nearly 60 years? Some say it’s his love of music itself. And while this is true, something he said to Rolling Stone about his latest collaboration, “Hope for the Future,” for the popular video game Destiny, gave a sense that his dedication goes deeper than that:

“When you’re writing something like ‘Hope for the Future,’ which is custom made, it is like doing a portrait for someone. You have to use your imagination and work out what they need, what they’re going to want, and then what you want to give them. Then you’ve got to combine those three things into something that you still think maintains integrity.”

Yes, even McCartney understands that a keen focus on the customer is an important part of his thinking and craft. So if a music icon and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer can transform his product to stay relevant to the masses, why shouldn’t you do the same?

Is your business ready for a digital revolution?

For decades, companies have been implementing traditional solutions such as ERP and CRM software to increase productivity. But according to Dr. Chakib Bouhdary, digital transformation officer at SAP, an unintended cost is emerging. “Business complexity is growing so fast that it keeps eating up any value you get from technology,” he observed during the Americas’ SAP User Group (ASUG) webcast “Value Creation in a Digital Economy.”

Under the mindset that digital transformation is only about technology, these companies are getting bigger, but do not have anywhere near the speed needed to respond to today’s consumers. Effectively, their own complexity has become a threatening barrier to growth. In fact, the OECD recently stated that a staggering $237 billion, equal to 10% of profits, is wasted due to complexity at the world’s largest 200 companies alone.

But, it doesn’t have to be this way. Removing processes and technologies that are mostly redundant, nonvalue-add (or as I call it, “fluff”) from the business can ensure your digital investments are best leveraged to realize their full value. But more important, you can build your brand like McCartney, using your imagination to determine what your customers need, what they will want, and what you can offer to appease them.

What it will take to be a live, digital business on the run

Whether it’s your supply chain and network, customer experience, workforce engagement, or information system, if one or more is broken, your customers are not happy, and your brand is at stake. To take chances and harmonize innovation with the interest of each customer, all four areas must be connected to a single, always-on, high-performing digital core that warehouses all of your data and distributes it across the business.

By peeling back the layers of organizational and IT infrastructure complexity, your entire enterprise can realize real-time visibility into every critical process that impacts your customers, suppliers, workforce, data management, and devices. And in the end, all decisions are made with an eye on predicting, simulating, planning, and anticipating future events with unprecedented accuracy.

Call it a crystal ball or “Hope for the Future” – either way, your customers will refer to your digital transformation as the reason why they keep buying more of your products and services and encouraging their friends and family to do the same.

Uncover the real value your business’ digital transformation. Watch the replay of the episode, “Value Creation in a Digital Economy,” in a series of Webcasts hosted by ASUG.

Image credit: © Mazzzur | Dreamstime.com – Sir Paul McCartney Performs Onstage At Olimpiyskiy Photo


Paul Kurchina

About Paul Kurchina

Paul Kurchina is a community builder and evangelist with the Americas’ SAP Users Group (ASUG), responsible for developing a change management program for ASUG members.