A Digital Leadership Journey
As I help organizations customize, scale and curate the vast amount of learning content out there, one skill – continuously cultivating a digital mindset, emerges as a skill many individuals and organizations struggle with.
Looking back on my own digital journey, my willingness to learn has been, by far, the cornerstone of progress. Today, as I continue to take another look at the work I do, helping develop inclusive leaders and organizations, I am increasingly asking myself how to digitally enable their growth.
I started my career journey when the operating system on desktops was MS-DOS. A digital immigrant, I always had a growth mindset related to technology. As the software evolved, I remember each iteration being a fresh challenge to which I relished. My growth mindset then, and now, keeps me curious and engaged in our ever-changing digital landscape.
If there is one bit of advice to anyone with a desire to continue to grow and develop its don’t be fearful of change. Embrace change by educating yourself about the change. Be curious. Stay open, Embrace the uncomfortably of learning. There will be a learning curve. However, with each curve you navigate your resilience muscle gets stronger. Your adaptability and agility get stronger. As humans we are not afraid of change, we are afraid of the unknown. Learn everything your can.
You don’t have to be a digital native, though it helps, to have a digital mindset. As organizations tap, the collective wisdom of 5 generations in the workforce, to solve business problems, enabled by technology, mindset matters. A digital mindset is what’s needed regardless of technical expertise. You do not need to code or engineer software solutions, unless of course that is your job, to contribute and lead in our digital world.
Gone are the days when digital enablement, transformation and innovation is the realm of IT or digital native brands like Amazon or Meta. Legacy organizations, in fact all organizations, must evolve and continue to evolve their digital culture.
Our enormous access to data, coupled with a majority population of digital natives who can consume digital information and stimuli quickly and comfortably opens vast opportunities to facilitate growth and development. It is truly an exciting time to be in learning and development. How you integrate digital tools across all levels of your organization to achieve goals, both learning and development goals and other business goals are key.
No matter what the business problem is, once clear on the problem, ask how can technology assist? What digital tools can I use to enable this solution?
Helping people grow is my jam. Some questions I ask are how can I:
Digitally enable learning
collect data on how employees are using digital platforms to access learning
create or deploy learning that is accessible anytime, anywhere, on any device
collect data on how employees are learning
measure the correlation between continuous learning and performance
incorporate AI driven adaptive learning (depending upon organizational resources)
examine how various tools help employees learn, in expected or unexpected ways
Digitally enable DEI
gather and provide data to leadership on how they are championing DEI
use gap analysis and industry benchmark data to help set DE&I Goals
transparency - create business goals and metrics for DEI and post on platform
- DEI goals are aspirational outcomes you want to achieve
- Successful DEI goals are actionable, measurable, and visible
post DEI scorecards
create online training
use technology and platforms where employees can access rewards, training and direct contact to HR or managers for employee engagement, retention and feedback
tie bonuses to DEI scorecards and track digitally
collect data on how the diverse slate is evaluated
analyze hiring data – Algorithms can identify candidates who have already gone through the vetting process but weren’t hired, yet still have in-demand skills and experience. Use the system to feed them into the company’s applicant tracking
analyze promotion data
use data analytics to measure equity – hiring practices, salary history, etc.
provide performance support for inclusion – support leaders with OJT tools to support communication, show up as allies, learn to have courageous conversations
collect data on development journeys diverse employees (and all employees) embark on
hire remote employees
recruit using social media
provide curated content resources to support employee engagement in continuous learning
use your technology to collect analyze relevant DEI data across departments, roles, teams, and committees
use your technology to track and compare how the budget for DEI compares to other growth initiatives
Like DEI, the journey to digital leadership is a journey. One in which your willingness to learn, unlearn and learn anew will serve you well.