Arlington, Va. (July 24, 2018)—In the latest issue of Research-Technology Management, the peer-reviewed journal of the Innovation Research Interchange (IRI), Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella suggests there are three main factors that contribute to a successful digital transformation: a value-creating concept, new capabilities, and the right culture.
In the exclusive, wide-ranging interview, Nadella also imparts some additional advice around how companies can navigate the challenges that come with executing a digital transformation. In addition to offering examples of how large companies such as Boeing have taken innovative approaches to digitization, Nadella gives readers clear-eyed and practical advice for taking the first steps.
“Any top executive must take a systems approach,” he says. “They must think about what the key initiatives are, how they are going to get the necessary capability, and what sort of cultural transformation will be needed in order to go bring all of the necessary elements together. That’s what’s going to separate winners from losers.”
Nadella continues: “My own take on it is that this is not just another thing to do. You can’t just hire a digital officer and think the job is done. Visit others and learn, open an office somewhere else to attract new talent.”
Other takeaways from the interview touch on the importance of cultivating a growth mindset, being grounded in what unique advantage the company can offer customers, and having a deep understanding of the organization’s values and capabilities.
Before being named CEO of Microsoft in February 2014, Nadella held leadership roles in both enterprise and consumer businesses across the company. Most recently, he was executive vice president of Microsoft’s Cloud and Enterprise group. In this role, he led the company’s transformation to the cloud infrastructure and services business, which outperformed the market and took share from competition.
The interview was conducted by RTM Editor-in-Chief Jim Euchner.