Transforming While Performing: A book review by Bob Morris

Transforming While Performing: A Practical Guide to Being Digital
Andres Angelani
Roundtree Press (November 2019)

Here’s a philosophy and the DNA at the heart of doing business “an entirely new way”

According to Andres Angelani, “Digital is more about who, how, and why than what. It represents a philosophy and the DNA at the heart of an organization. Digital is a way of doing things. It’s reimagining an entirely new way to do business and go to market, with customer and technology at the center.”

Angelani’s latest book is a “practical guide” for business leaders who need help completing a transition from mechanical and analogue electronic technologies to more advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI); sensors and the Internet of Things (IOT); autonomous machines (robots, cobots, drones, and self-driving vehicles); distributed leaders and blockchains; virtual, augmented, and mixed reality; and connecting everything and everyone such as 5G networks and satellite constellations.

I first became aware of some of this when I read Nicholas Negroponte’s Being Digital, published in 1995. (Keep in mind that Tim Berners-Lee introduced his concept of a world-wide web only two years before.) What we have in Transforming While Performing are, in effect, a tool box and an operations manual for expediting the aforementioned transition.

Angelani provides an abundance of information, insights, and counsel that can help business leaders create and then strengthen a workplace culture within which high-impact innovations can be developed in collaboration with customers or clients as well as with strategic allies and even competitors.

John Kotter told me during an iterview that one of the most difficult changes to achieve is changing the way people think about change. Those who are entrusted with organizational transformation must first transform their thinking about what that requires. Angelani can help them to do that.

Years ago, while visiting several vineyards north of San Francisco, I had a lengthy conversation with an owner who pointed out that old wine in new bottles still tastes like old wine…and sometimes like vinegar.

I wholly agree with Andres Angelani: “Business doesn’t stop. Today’s environment demands that we digitally transform today while we continue to perform.” Meanwhile, keep in mind: “You will never be fully and finally transformed. You don’t get across the finish line. You [should] always be transforming” in collaboration with partners, embracing new opportunities to create substantial value with them for your and their customers.


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