Why are people the most important thing in digitization? The benefits and the nonsense

by | 30. May 2023 | News, Unternehmenskultur

Without users, no sense.

It’s just like musicians. You’ve probably heard musicians thank their fans many times: “You’re the most important thing to us, without you we’d be nothing.” When I was younger, I often wondered why they said that. At some point, I figured it out: If nobody hears it, it’s no use.
It’s no use because: There’s no money to be made, there’s no recognition and gratitude, there’s no natural progression based on the listeners’ voices. In short: No sustainability is achieved. And it is no fun.

It’s the same with digitization. If no one uses it, it’s of no use.

The best tool, the best way of working, the most beautiful monitor – are all worth nothing if no one uses them.
There are already technologies that we don’t even dream about in our wildest dreams. We don’t because we can’t imagine that such a thing could exist, and therefore we can’t imagine any concrete benefit. Nevertheless, these technologies could move the world. If only they were used.

What does this mean for digitization in organizations?

The focus is always on the benefits for people. If this is not present or is not communicated sufficiently, we can only force implementation and even that only slowly and tenaciously (depending on the sanctions, of course, somewhat faster). So the first question should always be: What do we need? What is useful to us?The second question is: How do we implement it? What technologies will help us?
And the third and most important question is: How do we communicate the benefits of change so that employees understand them? The emphasis here, as you have probably guessed, is on UNDERSTANDING.

And beware, here lies a trap: For you, the benefit is obvious? The tool does everything better, doesn’t it?

Others can’t see it, believe me. They still can’t see it either, once you present it to them. No. They don’t see it. And that’s not because they don’t want to, they CAN’T see it. Always remember: we all have our own reality. Everyone has their daily work routine and it can be as different from colleague to colleague as tomatoes and parsley. Both go well together and the result is great (for tomato lovers at least), but both have very different preferences for them to thrive. Both realities are very different.

So what to do?

Place a very high value on communicating the benefits of what you are going to change or introduce or adapt. Place such a high value on this communication that it seems like way too much. Then you have a chance that the benefits will actually be seen.
Be sure to make this communication user-centric. User in the plural sense. Ask yourself what types of users you have, create personas: tomato persona, parsley persona, and so on. Elicit the realities of the different personas. What drives them? What do they need? Where are their problems? What are their desires? And not to be neglected: What don’t they care about? How many times has a great benefit been communicated comprehensively, colorfully and beautifully, but unfortunately to people who didn’t care at all because it simply didn’t matter in their everyday lives? I’ll tell you: Too often, unfortunately.
Everyone is different and this diversity is what makes us creative, efficient and great. Serve this diversity also in communication about digitalization. That way, the benefits will be seen. Promise.