Digital Disruption: Leadership in times of change - Amsterdam Executive Summary  

2 August 2018:

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The need for business transformation has never been greater. In a world where the world of work and the business models that support it are changing exponentially, organisations need to adapt to stay competitive.

The key raw material for making this happen is undoubtedly digital. It’s the digitalisation of processes and employee experiences that ensures innovation and transformation thrives. Yet, while technology is a given, what is arguably much more important is true leadership transformation.

The digitisation of businesses requires leaders to confront challenges and adapt in ways they may not have expected. The recent Digital Transformation Readiness Survey, conducted by the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) and CorporateLeaders, reveals that while leadership change is needed more than ever, barriers to digital transformation still exist. Amongst the top concerns are ‘resistance to change’ (as noted by 34% of those polled), while more worryingly, the top two concerns are ‘insufficient internal skills’ (55%) and ‘lack of a clear vision’ (46%) – both of which fall squarely under leaders’ remits.

While technology is a given, what is arguably much more important is true leadership transformation.

For these reasons CCL believes disruption can’t simply be an event; it has to be a journey; one where leaders first need to disrupt their role and their own leadership identities before they can begin to disrupt their own style of leadership. As Jasmine De Clerck, General Manager Benelux, France and Denmark, at CCL says: “Transformation is about creating psychological safety. What is often observed in organisations is fear and inadequacy from leaders about just what digital disruption is. For many leaders it’s a new business model that threatens them.” The solution, she says – and which CCL has built its own methodology around – “is to lower organisations’ learning anxiety and when this happens transformation can really happen.”

Just one way of reducing learning anxiety is by networking and hearing direct from executives doing digital disruption for themselves. It’s why CCL, in partnership with CorporateLeaders, hosted a series of special roundtable meetings across Europe. The Amsterdam event, which was moderated by Jasmine De Clerck and featured presentations by Pascal Smits, responsible for Digital Transformation and E-commerce at Phillips Lighting, and Joseph Press, Global Innovator and Strategic Advisor at CCL, brought together leaders from some of Europe’s largest companies to share experiences and explore the key challenges we face today.

To read more, DOWNLOAD the Executive Summary from the Roundtable Meeting "Digital Disruption: Leadership in times of change"!

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