The importance of corporate culture can be hard to quantify, but certainly developing and supporting a culture that enhances the organization’s ability to meet or exceed business goals is vitally important. For today’s digital businesses, key technology platforms support this goal.
As any business looks to the future, it has become clear that the modern digital business must implement new apps and tools that support the desired cultural attributes.
Two commonly desired cultural attributes that new digital platforms must support are collaboration and creativity. The ability of teams to complete projects more quickly and with better outcomes is critical to success. Collaborating more effectively can also provide a sustainable competitive advantage. And creativity—the ability to conceive of and document new business processes, product ideas, or improvements to the customer experience—separates winners from losers. Creativity can come from anywhere in the organization and providing all employees with the digital tools that support individual creativity is fast becoming the norm for digital businesses. As collaboration becomes more prevalent and easier in an organization, “creative silos” are removed, and teams are able to share ideas and innovation across business units.
The power of analytics and consistent data
Specific technologies have proven themselves to be important for driving collaboration and creativity as part of the corporate culture. The specifics of any implementation may vary from company to company, but in general these solutions are broadly effective. Below are two examples of technologies that enable collaboration and creativity, but there are of course many others.
Perhaps the most important new technology is analytics. The most impactful analytic tools are those that can be used by virtually every employee, not just highly trained data scientists. Analytics tools provide the insight and perspectives that are essential to finding creative new internal business processes or ways to interact with customers. Empowering employees with analytic platforms that they can easily use and integrate into their daily routine is the starting point for finding the specific insights that ignite the spark of creativity. And this creative spark becomes intoxicating. Once data is used to inspire creative thinking to improve the brand experience, employees will become more excited to use the data to solve complex customer issues.
Analytics also supports enhanced collaboration, since a single, consistent set of analyses that documents business results or provides insights can be the foundation which all teams can build on. Teams that use different data will spend an inordinate amount of time identifying which analyses are “right” rather than doing useful work.
A technology solution that provides comprehensive and consistent customer data is the second vital driver of collaboration and creativity. Having a “single source of truth” for customer behavior and activity is the foundation for collaboration activities that focus on sales, product development, and marketing, to name a few. Consistent customer data that delivers a 360-degree view enables teams to focus on the project at hand with the confidence that they aren’t heading in the wrong direction. Comprehensive customer data supports creativity by giving you the ability to segment or identify specific customer or prospect types and what triggers their actions. It’s now possible to be much more creative in how the business interacts with specific types or groups of its customers.
Having documented and accurate data and analyses is the catalyst for both collaboration and creativity. The ability to focus on “what to do” rather than “what is the data?” moves both processes forward more quickly and effectively. Creativity is not something that the Design or Marketing teams own. With the right tools in place, all employees will feel a sense of ownership for finding creative solutions to the customer problems at hand.
To learn more about how to build a culture of creativity and collaboration, please click here.