Adobe Digital Dialogue

November 15, 2016 /Digital Marketing /

Part 3 — The Digital Strategy Workshop

A framework & tools to build a digital strategy quickly


In the first part of the series we cov­ered the impor­tance and approach for a dig­i­tal strat­e­gy exe­cu­tion and in the sec­ond part we reviewed the dig­i­tal strat­e­gy frame­work and now we are going to walk a prac­ti­cal appli­ca­tion of this frame­work in the work­shop envi­ron­ment.

The first thing to under­stand is that we will be col­lect­ing a lot of infor­ma­tion, but in most cas­es you will have lim­it­ed time and atten­tion from your stake­hold­ers so in order for us to keep in focused on their behalf we will only cov­er the Enter­prise Goals, Dig­i­tal Goals and Ini­tia­tives in the work­shop. The Dig­i­tal Tac­tics we will fol­low up post the work­shop with the indi­vid­ual Ini­tia­tive own­ers.

Exer­cise 1: Iden­ti­fy the Enter­prise Goals

  1. List all Enter­prise Goals
  2. Iden­ti­fy the top 3–5 Enter­prise Goals to focus on
  3. Pri­ori­tise Enter­prise Goals

Start­ing on the left-hand side of your white­board have the stake­hold­ers call out the Enter­prise goals. This is where you may have to facil­i­tate the con­ver­sion to ensure they are Enter­prise Goals and sec­ond­ly that they are tan­gi­ble. Once you have agree­ment across the stake­hold­er group on the goals you then need to run a pri­or­i­ti­za­tion exer­cise. The rea­son we do this is, at some point you might be con­strained for bud­get, resources or band­width and have to choose which ini­tia­tive you need to focus on and by under­stand­ing the Enter­prise Goals will then allow you to pri­ori­tise the ini­tia­tive attached to the most impor­tant goals over the one that is of less­er impor­tance.

The pri­or­i­ti­za­tion exer­cise I usu­al­ly use is to ask the stake­hold­ers if you had $100, $50, $20, $10 & $5, which goal is the $100 goal, $50 goal and so forth. Allow 15 — 25 min­utes for list­ing the goals, dis­cus­sion and pri­or­i­ti­za­tion.

Exer­cise 2: Iden­ti­fy the Dig­i­tal Goals

  1. Split into groups – each group to focus on 1–2 Enter­prise Goals
  2. Iden­ti­fy 1–2 Dig­i­tal Goals required to achieve each Enter­prise Goal
  3. Present back for dis­cus­sion & agree­ment

Map these Dig­i­tal Goals to right of the of each Enter­prise Goals on the white­board. Allow 15 – 25 min­utes for this exer­cise.

Exer­cise 3 – Iden­ti­fy Ini­tia­tives

  1. Split into groups – each group to focus on 1–2 Dig­i­tal Goals
  2. Iden­ti­fy all ini­tia­tives required to achieve the Dig­i­tal Goals
  3. Present back for dis­cus­sion & agree­ment
  4. Pri­ori­ti­sa­tion of the Ini­tia­tives (Short, Medi­um & Long Term)

Map these Dig­i­tal Goals to right of the of each Enter­prise Goals on the white­board. Allow 15 – 25 min­utes for this exer­cise.

Hope­ful­ly by the end of the exer­cise you should have some­thing like the below on the white­board:

Enterprise Goals - Digital Goals - Initiatives

At this point you can con­clude the work­shop and then make time with the Ini­tia­tive stake­hold­ers to fol­low up with them indi­vid­u­al­ly to cap­ture their Dig­i­tal Tac­tics for each ini­tia­tive.

Once you have col­lect­ed the work­shop and tac­tics infor­ma­tion you are now ready to insert this into the pro­vid­ed Excel spread­sheet.

The Excel file has five tabs:

  • Instruc­tions – has the instruc­tions of what sheets to insert your infor­ma­tion into
  • Resources – insert the resources assigned to the project, project dif­fi­cul­ty and project pri­or­i­ty
  • Con­trols – where you insert the dig­i­tal strat­e­gy work­shop infor­ma­tion, days to com­plete and start date
  • Gantt View – as per the name
  • Tab­u­lar View – as per the name

Once you have insert­ed your work­shop infor­ma­tion and set the pri­or­i­ties, days to com­plete, project own­ers, etc. you can then go to the Gantt View and Tab­u­lar View sheets and push the ren­der but­tons in the top left.

You should see some­thing sim­i­lar to the below:

Workshop information and priorities

This is your dig­i­tal strat­e­gy plan in both a Tab­u­lar and Gantt chart view, ranked by pri­or­i­ty Enter­prise Goal, Dig­i­tal Goal, colour cod­ed by dif­fi­cul­ty, tied to mea­sur­able aligned KPI, project own­er and resources.

Ensure to present this back to the Stake­hold­ers and walk them through the doc­u­ments and the KPI’s as their buy-in will be crit­i­cal for rapid adop­tion and con­sen­sus.

Here are some oth­er key steps to ensure suc­cess of your Dig­i­tal Strat­e­gy:

  • Iden­ti­fy a Dig­i­tal Strat­e­gy Own­er — Iden­ti­fy 1 per­son who will own, devel­op and dri­ve the dig­i­tal strat­e­gy.
  • Stake­hold­er buy-in — Ensure all busi­ness stake­hold­ers have con­tributed to the devel­op­ment of the dig­i­tal strat­e­gy.
  • Strat­e­gy – Com­plete the plan­ning phase by iden­ti­fy­ing Dig­i­tal Tac­tics & actions required to achieve Short, Medi­um & Long term ini­tia­tives.
  • Plan­ning — Use project man­age­ment prin­ci­pals includ­ing detailed project plans to mon­i­tor exe­cu­tion phase.
  • Mea­sure­ment — Assign a busi­ness val­ue to each ini­tia­tive (e.g. rev­enue uplift, cost sav­ing etc) & set KPI base­lines to mea­sure these changes once opti­miza­tions have been imple­ment­ed.
  • Pub­li­cise suc­cess — Report and com­mu­ni­cate opti­mi­sa­tion achieve­ments against goals’s through­out the orga­ni­za­tion.
  • Appli­ca­tion — Run dig­i­tal strate­gies on a reg­u­lar basis (Bi-annu­al­ly at a min.) at var­i­ous lev­els with­in the orga­ni­za­tion to val­i­date rel­e­vance.

With the rapid change across indus­tries in dig­i­tal I rec­om­mend run­ning this work­shop quar­ter­ly to review, re-pri­ori­tise ini­tia­tives and report on progress, at a min­i­mum it should be done bi-annu­al­ly.

This con­cludes the overview of the work­shop and frame­work, hope­ful­ly it pro­vides you with an easy to use tool and robust frame­work to apply with­in your organ­i­sa­tion and allows you dri­ve align­ment across the busi­ness and a com­mon dia­logue of goals and met­rics.

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  • By Ravi - 6:29 PM on December 3, 2016   Reply

    This is great stuff, Scot. We should share our IP and deliv­er some joint work­shops on dig­i­tal strate­gies and trans­for­ma­tions for SMEs.

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