January 20, 2021

Making Things Work: Sitting Down With Ben Johnson

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Ben Johnson is the CEO of BML Digital, which helps companies transform for the digital age. 

In our sit down with Ben, he explains how to realise a digital transformation that focuses on people and truly drives the future of the business. 


Present Problems, Present Investments, Present Results


At the beginning of our conversation, Ben spoke about how many companies and organizations invest way too much in the present and not the future. 


  • Present problems
  • Present investments
  • Present results

 

All of the above is just a constant cycle of wasted investments, while your competition has taken advantage and has invested into the future and is now ahead of the game.


Ben gave great insight into the issue itself in order for your organization to lead and stay relevant.


“The now is irrelevant, you need to look to a future business model, look at what competitors are doing to stay ahead, you need to jump ahead with the right digital technology.” -Ben Johnson


Another challenge for many organizations is that people fear change.


Many organizations have been around for 10-20 years, using the same business models that have worked for them but change is inevitable, change is growth. 


Staff that have been accustomed to a certain customer market and business model can lack innovation, they are basically stuck in a bubble of consistency and constrained thoughts.


Ultimately people on all levels of an organization that are used to a certain business model are fearful, worried, and overwhelmed. It is because they are stepping into a world they do not understand. 


People within the organization will be set in their ways, and those same people will be making assumptions about changes without any data to back assumptions up.


A way to help a digital transformation take off is to provide people with data-based information.


You can take the worries and apprehension away with data-based facts and make informed decisions on what type of technology to invest in. This leads to building confidence within an organization during the adoption of any digital transformation.


Bringing and Connecting People Together


People remain at the heart of any transformation, without bringing the internal staff along the journey there is no balance in the end.


Yes, your organization can have clever technology that does clever things but without staff learning and understanding these things the momentum can suffer.


Staff and your target market go hand in hand, there is the human factor involved that will help bring balance to your organization.


You must think of the bigger picture, how everything in and around the organization is connected and when making changes to and for your organization’s future. 


You will need to create a multi-channel effect, not just a website or app, yes you obviously need those things but it is not just tech multi-channels it is about people on a journey together.  


It starts with people from the top to the bottom and everyone in between of your organization, including your target customers.


Connecting people from staff to customers creates a multi-channel effect. This will allow your organization to keep and gain customers


Ben explains that when transforming an organization you don't need to talk about technology, you need to talk openly with people to make them feel secure and not alienated. 

You must explain the process of what is to be expected of this transformation, as well as keep staff involved as much as possible, even with decision making but this must be done with an approachable finesse.


It makes people feel as if they are truly a part of the organization and the digital transformation journey.


This allows the change to go much more smoothly and to be more accepted, this is especially true for organizations that have been around for years and are now realising they need to adapt to the now.


Strategies and Words of Wisdom


Ben spoke about building strategies by working with people like partners and experts.

When you expand your circle you grow your knowledge, have discussions on what they are doing to amplify their businesses and organizations and reflect with them on what you're doing for your organization.


It is not just about working together, it is about making moves together.


Working together to collect data, finding out what customers want and need are all a part of any transformation strategy. Seeing what and where investments need to go and where to bank the organisation’s money is essential.


Data allows you to make informative decisions that payoff, when you do not have the data you are essentially playing a guessing game that can cost you a lot. 


That is just not sensible, it is a strategy doomed to fail. 


At the end of our conversation about Ben had some words of wisdom, he said it is all about people and getting them to understand what it means to transform an organization and the benefits behind the transformation. Technology will change and evolve. It is about the culture from within an organization and getting these winds in the sails. That is when you can solve problems and keep the momentum going.