24 Feb, 2017

How to sell your digital transformation vision? 4 steps to get buy-in from your peers


Let’s set the scene. You’ve been promoted to the board to lead the digital transformation, but first, you need to get the other members to buy-in to your vision.

Easier said than done!

Any major shift in business practice requires clear and open communication. It will be crucial to the fruition of your vision to provide details at the right time to the right colleagues. Especially when you consider how your colleagues will advocate for their teams and will not want someone else telling them how to co-ordinate their department, in particular, if that person has not…

Step 1 to any major shift should always be to meet with key individuals in the business to better understand their functions, their objectives, and their challenges.

That way when you’re selling your vision you can demonstrate clearly how your idea will assist them. The fastest way to get buy-in from anyone is to show how it will make their lives easier.

An example for you. I recently joined Millennium Alliance to form their marketing department. A challenge for multiple reasons, especially as previously, they had not had any co-ordinated marketing and relied mainly on referrals. Everything I do is new to them. Naturally, with the introduction of any new function or digital transformation, it is likely to impact process or require new systems that change how you use current ones. It’s likely to upset the status quo and for some change can be tough to take. Before joining, I had, of course, researched the business and had a pretty clear idea of the direction I wanted to take the marketing. The first thing I did was talk to the heads of every department. I found out their challenges and what their objectives are, asked them how they see marketing working within the business and if they had any ideas on how to share our products. And most crucially, offered them the opportunity to ask me any questions.

All of this information (along with simply listening to what’s going on around me) led to the formation of the first-month plan, which was clearly communicated to all.

The main reason why I say its so important to do this is because as anyone new, or anyone moving into a new position, you need to understand what came before you, how things currently work, areas of strength and areas of weakness. All this needs to factor into your digital transformation. One of the most vital steps in your digital transformation journey is the assessment of your own assets. Not only will taking the time to talk to fellow business leaders help you convince them later, it’s also taking you one step closer to your goal of digital transformation.

Step 2 is the planning phase. 

This is where you put together a clear strategy and timeline for your digital transformation vision. Start with the end goal, and work your way back. Detail the smaller objectives you’ll need to hit to ensure that you reach that end goal. This will help provide clear parameters for all involved and allow you to track progress.

Step 3 strategize. 

Actually gather all the data together in a clear, logical way. This document should be openly available to the business at all times. For those data-hungry few, they will want to know more. This will help you get past the gatekeepers. For the innovators, it will help them understand your vision and see your logic. You can’t think outside the box unless there is a box!

Step 4 create your pitch. 

Make all of this digestible. Your pitch to the board has to sell your vision, so use proven sales techniques to get your message across. Make sure your presentation is no longer than 15 minutes long.

Here are the slides you need to include. The best presentations are short and succinct. Provide your audience with a printed version of your more detailed plan.

Slide 1 – The Elevator Pitch – succinctly provide an overview of your plan.

Slide 2 – The Opportunity – why is your vision necessary to the business? Remember to directly answer the problems faced by your peers and any concerns that were raised during step 1.

Slide 3 – Hero Slide – this is where you show how your vision solves.

Slide 4 – People – digital transformation is often associated with technology, but it’s actually all about people.

Slide 5 – Competition – business leaders are obsessed with where they stand versus their competition. Use this to your advantage.

Slide 6 – Timeline – briefly detail the key steps and the time it will take for your vision to reach fruition. Typically, most digital transformations should be completed between 6-12 months.

Slide 7 – Technology – detail what assets you have and what you need. The relationship between management and IT is critical. Make sure you speak directly to IT here.

Slide 8 – Finances – money talks. Show that you’ve thought carefully about the costs involved and how your vision will lead to more revenue.

Slide 9 – Back it Up – provide success stories. Don’t have to be from your own market. Real-life cases will add conviction to your pitch.

Slide 10 – Open up to the Floor – leave plenty of time for questions and be prepared. Revisit your notes from step 1.

The healthcare industry is on the precipice of digital transformation. To find out more about latest trends, join us at Digital Healthcare Transformation Assembly 2017 >>

Digital Healthcare Transformation

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