The Leader’s Role in Raising the Collective Digital IQ

If your company invested in building a more collaborative and connected workplace in 2020, this may be a good time to reflect.

  • Did your investments garner the results you anticipated?
  • Is problem-solving easier and more effective?
  • Do team members make decisions differently?

According to PwC’s 2018 Digital IQ report, “54% of top financial performers say their leadership is digitally savvy and helps the workforce think in a new way, compared with 41% of others.”

That’s a lot of room for growth.  Investing in the digital workplace, without accountability from leadership, is leaving many companies with underutilized technology, missed optimization of talent and a diminished competitive edge.

You as a leader can play a key role in encouraging implementation of your DW programs, and ultimately help raise the company’s collective digital IQ.  Wondering where to start?

  1. Make sure you consistently communicate the importance of technology to the organization and its customers. Depending on the culture and product, this may already be well ingrained – or it may be strong in one area of the business, and weaker in another.
  2. Promote the use of collaborative technology as a way for employees to increase productivity — as a way to make their work easier.
  3. As you set new expectations around digital IQ, demonstrate these new behaviors (for example, use these collaboration tools when hosting your team meetings).

As easy as this sounds, you’ll note certain baselines may still need to be established.

First, your team needs a common understanding of collaboration. David Coleman defines collaboration in this way, “Two or more people (or machines), working together for a specific purpose or goal.” You’ll need to develop this further for your organization, but it works as a simple starting point.

Second, leaders need to clarify what collaboration is not. For example, collaboration is not simply posting a document on a collaboration app, with an expectation and assumption that everyone will read it. Help team members understand communication and collaboration skills more broadly, and how they apply in the digital environment.

Third, invest in training and coaching to close related skills gaps.  Skill gaps may include working collaboratively, communicating empathy, managing diverse teams and engaging employees during change.

Reenforce by example, reencourage through communication and reinvest in your people — and by 2021, your business may be starting the year with a higher “collective digital IQ”.

To learn more, and share your successes and challenges, register here for the Digital Workplace Experience, happening June 3-5, 2020 in Chicago.

Want to sponsor? Learn More