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Revamping Your Business Through Digital Transformation

Revamping Your Business Through Digital Transformation

George Westerman and Didier Bonnet

MIT Sloan Management Review | February 18, 2015

To gain the most business benefits from today’s digital technology, it pays to question key managerial assumptions.

There is no shortage of stories about companies that create amazing innovations with digital technology. By using mobile devices, social media, analytics and the cloud, savvy companies are transforming the way they do business. Most of the stories feature companies that are small and young or that operate in industries such as music or high tech, where digital technology has already radically shifted the business landscape. For larger companies in more traditional industries, it’s easy to think that digital transformation can wait and that a follower strategy is a safer route than trying to be a pioneer. That kind of thinking, while tempting, is wrong.

Although the software, media and technology industries get a disproportionate share of the attention, those industries account for less than 10% of the U.S. economy. What about the other 90%? We studied more than 400 large companies around the world in industries including manufacturing, hospitality and mining. We found that in every industry we studied, companies are doing exciting things with digital technology and getting impressive business benefits. What’s more, any organization can adopt their methods.

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