The secret to digital transformation, driven by powerful partnerships
- 5 min
How can organisations collaborate on digital transformation in a way that has real impact – not only on the tangible outcomes, but also on personal outcomes for the humans contributing to the shared success?
"Teamwork is the ability to work together towards a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organisational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results."
- Andrew Carnegie
As digital technology has become increasingly more complex, the work being asked of the industry that builds it, is equally as elaborate, and therefore, requires strength and courage from all who are responsible for working on digital transformation strategies. After all, this is work that can change lives, organisations and society in its entirety.
Often, the most effective way for organisations to accomplish these combined feats of engineering and creativity, is to draw on close collaborations with trusted and specialist partners who can deliver the expertise they don’t have internally.
We have all been in some type of relationship -- they take communication, trust, and constant effort. Organisational relationships, must draw on those same qualities, and be ever- mindful of the effort required to nurture and develop the collaboration, as everyone involved moves through a shared journey.
Mudbath works in partnership with brands big and small, on cutting-edge and complex technology projects, from nib, Grays Online, Intrepid Travel, Essential Energy and Michael Hill Jewellers to name a few. Through our partnerships, we work closely, share knowledge and help clients achieve their goals.
We work hard to find ways that teams can reach velocity quickly, contribute, achieve their career goals and – here's the kicker – feel valued and supported, regardless of which organisation in the collaboration employs them!
Great partnerships are built on great relationships and Mudbath have worked to build those strong bonds at all levels with our team at Michael Hill.
Taking the time to learn our business, and develop ways of working that are right for us, has been a key factor in delivering on our project goals.
- John Moxon, Digital Engineering Manager, Michael Hill Jewellers
We have narrowed down our most successful partnerships to five elements, and we share those openly;
So what are the five pillars in successful digital transformation teams?
Organisational trust between the two companies comes first. Build a partnership, a ‘relationship’ at the top and at every level of the two companies. Articulate your organisational standards and align them, or find common ground, as a first step.
Understand the history of the organisation you are partnering with, the people who run it, ask how they hire and the type of people they employ. Speak with other companies that work with them – ask questions. Once you have that trust -- help them shine – you are there to support each other.
Be transparent about your company strategy. Often partners are running multiple roadmaps and each organisation may have people, capabilities or delivery that can help the other - and that’s the name of the game! Use a tool that shows, at a high level, what your plans are, so your partner is always thinking of what's next for you, and you are doing the same for them.
Be prepared for things to not always go smoothly. Be open when things aren’t going well – allow for conversation in the awkward parts of a stream of work. Fail fast together, learn and succeed.
Work with a partner that reflects the values you want your teams to have. Bringing people into teams who have strong values and purpose can add life and energy to a team suffering from burn out. Look for what your teams need right now and align with a partner that embodies the values that will help your team meet that need.
At Mudbath, we strongly recommend appointing a principal engineer who understands your enterprise architecture. This person spends a few hours a week talking to your organisation about technical roadmaps and blockers. Alignment on people and work, in teams, and their progression, allows for feedback.
Coaches help people working in streams to speed up velocity, more openly support questions and guarantee delivery is quality.
This will also ensure the people get the same messages from you and from the partner they work for – consistency is crucial!
Coaches are a key to people's success and that success leads to stickiness in teams -- something large transformations rely on.
Make time for the teams to socialise outside of “doing work”.
Team members need to feel like they have each other’s backs. Whether remote (given the nature of work at present) or face-to-face, catch ups and activities can help bond team mates, create alignment in values, and open up communication. It builds a stronger team and better working relationships.
Include partners in team building and planning days – like your team members, their people bring experience and ideas that will contribute to your success. You never know, they could just give you the idea you’ve been looking for!
Our purpose at Mudbath is to build great collaborative partnerships with organisations that want to make an impact -- our people thrive on working with other like-minded people and creating relationships that are built on solid foundations, and we know your people will too.
A partnership with Mudbath is so much more than a collaborative relationship between organisations – it’s a unique opportunity to learn from each other and transform organisations everyday.