Step 1. Position IT in your enterprise strategy
Digital success requires leaders to identify and align with the enterprise’s digital ambition. Is the objective to use digital technology to optimize your current business model to improve productivity, products and customer service; or do you use it to pursue new business models, products or services? Once your ambition is clear, appropriately position IT at the heart of your business strategy. It will negate the need for a separate digital business strategy and allow the enterprise to begin thinking and acting like a digital business.
Step 2. Reshape your personal role
CIOs must reframe their role in enterprise strategy development to be effective. Think like a designer by taking a customer-centric perspective to reframe business challenges. Connect the dots to bridge the gap between technology trends and business. Practice entrepreneurism with a mindset that is relentless in the pursuit of outcomes and a resourceful attitude that enlists the support of the wider organization.
Step 3. Build capabilities to ensure your strategy is effective
In Gartner’s 2018 CIO survey, 46% of respondents identified culture as the main barrier to scaling digital business. Sinha says CIOs need to address the culture challenge head on. “Too often strategies focus on what is familiar,” she says. “Task your team with providing frequent insight, especially from customers, and feed it into strategy conversations.”
To contribute effectively to strategy, you’ll need to have the right roles in place. In particular, you’ll need a strong facilitator – someone to run the process, get the right people together and work with you on renewing your strategic planning process. Then, deliver. Tangible business impact will keep you at the strategy table.
This article has been updated from the original, published on November 21, 2017, to reflect new events, conditions or research.