Digital Transformation of Management in the Uncertainty of Pandemics

By Khaled S. Nabhan


The COVID-19 pandemic has enormously driven interest into digitalization of management process for more than 9 months and yet more challenges are to come expectedly. Digital platforms, on the other hand, are trying to cope with the disruptions the pandemic has been making in our lives and the day-to-day regular patterns of business. While the human toll of the pandemic keeps increasing, many already look at how the pandemic impacts the digital transformation of management.


The Economist recently noted that one of the most manifested consequences of the current pandemic is “the infusion of data-enabled services into ever more aspects of life.” They also expect digital transformation of management to be an even bigger imperative for organizations in the short-term future.


Contrary to the popular belief, digital transformation of management is less about technologies and more about people. You can almost buy any technology with vast features as you want, but the ability to adapt such technology depends on ameliorating the 21st-century skills thus bridging the gap between talent supply and demand.


I believe this marks the time for bringing bold learning at scale into fruition, since the increasing usage of digital technologies in times of uncertainty is not contemporary. Still, in this harshly forced reality, the scale is quite unprecedented and has accelerated digital transformation of the management process for distributed teams and the workforce. It is hard to rely on conventional management process and practices to overcome such insurmountable challenges. While the future is uncertain than ever, management experts and advisors are confident that a pretty strong bid on adjusting such uncertainty of the future is to focus on reskilling and upskilling people. Every business by this point eventually concluded that digital transformation of management is now the sanctuary.


"Invest in people" is thus the motto, as technology is about doing more with less workforce. However, such combination is only effective when pairing technologies with the righteous human skills. Therefore, focusing on soft skills is a major milestone to achieve success in your process of change towards the digital transformation of management. Just like the digital transformation is again more about people rather than technologies, the key skills are soft skills rather than hard skills. Since nobody knows what the future trend of hard skills will be, the wise action is to bet on the talents who are most likely to develop such skills. One last tip is that you need to drive change from top to bottom. While the idea of grassroots change is both romantic and intuitive, still in reality, change is more likely to happen if you drive it accordingly.


Now, we all came to a conclusion: We are agile as a global community and this agility has been people-led and technology-supported. It all starts with each and every one of us and those who are responsible for the acts of transformational development, hence the way is to nurture curiosity and we do have options, even outside of the pandemics aurora.

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