Digital Transformation Article 3: Changing Habits

Save Your Company By Changing Habits

Every business faces the danger of being “captured” by its existing ways of doing things. Old habits of connecting to your customers, keeping internal track of bills and payments, and paying your employees are hard to break. They seem to work and you are getting by, so why change?

But a massive disruption is happening in all business due to “digital transformation.” Any business owner who doesn’t recognize that and respond fast enough will face competitors blowing by them. And not only CAN this happen but it IS happening overnight and at paces we’ve never seen before.

All of us who own businesses – and not just digital ones — face the same three cardinal challenges: risk, threat and opportunity. But it is how we respond to them that will determine whether we are around at the end of the day.

I know this sounds theoretical, but let’s consider the consumer habits of one demographic: people in their late 20s to late 40s. They are changing how, where, and when Americans shop. This group cares about convenience, time and quality. They are buying at Costco (for high quality, choice, and cost perhaps monthly), purchasing on Amazon (for convenience and weekly needs) and high-end grocery stores like Whole Foods (for daily needs like bread and fruits).

Those customers are not looking at coupons and running to four places to get their needs met. They have neither the time nor inclination. And those approaches to commerce are spilling over into every type of business transaction. Companies that don’t think about how to respond or adapt to these changes face extinction.

Whale oil sellers couldn’t believe kerosene would replace them. Kerosene sellers didn’t believe gasoline would take off. And gasoline producers… while not endangered yet, face autonomous vehicles – all likely electric – which will rock their world soon enough. Can you say Apple Car?

Editor’s note: I wrote this a few weeks ago, but the weekend purchase of Whole Food by Amazon makes it look like my Magic 8-Ball occasionally gets it right. Our tech worlds are colliding and we might not recognize any of our old purchasing and living habits shortly!

About the Digital Transformation Series:

Over the next few months Applied Tech President and CEO Kurt Sippel will be exploring “Digital Transformation” in a series of articles with the hope to inform, educate, and discuss its many different facets. Digital transformation is the profound and accelerating transformation of business activities, processes, competencies and models to fully leverage the changes and opportunities of digital technologies and their impact across society in a strategic and prioritized way, with present and future shifts in mind. Kurt will explain how this effects your business, how to best prepare and how to leverage the technology to get the upper hand on your competition.

If you would like to be notified of the upcoming articles sign up below!

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About Kurt Sippel:

CEO Kurt Sippel began his technology career at age 18 when he began providing consultation services to various small businesses in Fond du Lac County. This was followed by eight years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he managed and taught research technology while pursuing a Master’s degree in urban and regional planning.
In 1999 Kurt left the university to start his own firm, Applied Tech Solutions Inc. to focus on the technology needs of small and medium sized businesses. Applied Tech is now the leading IT managed service provider in Dane County and has offices in Madison, Waukesha and Stevens Point.

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