The Digital Leadership Gap

Part 1 of a 2-part post


New research reveals an alarming reality. Digital disruption is upon us, yet a significant percentage of organizations are doing nothing to increase their digital abilities.


Eighty percent of nearly 800 business leaders surveyed by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services say their industry will be disrupted by digital trends, and most of those said their industry has either passed the tipping point of disruption (28%) or will by 2020 (56%). However, nearly a quarter of respondents to the Microsoft-sponsored research have done little or nothing to become more digital. These non-digital companies recognize that change is coming – nearly three-quarters say their industry will be disrupted, and 60% of those say that is likely to happen in the next three years. Yet only a quarter have developed a strategy for the digital future or say their business leaders have a clear vision of which business models will drive success in 2020 and beyond. In contrast, digital leaders are almost three times as likely to have a strategy in place and to say their business leaders have a clear vision of success for 2020.


It’s not hard to imagine how this will play out. Digital leaders are developing not only the vision and strategy but the capabilities (skills, culture, organizational structures and processes) to successfully compete in the digital economy. There is, of course, some variation by industry, with technology and financial services companies leading the way. Government, healthcare and retail are the least likely to have a digital strategy, at 27%, 34% and 39%, respectively. We do see this changing, especially in retail, as consumers demand a more integrated multi-channel shopping experience. The point is, within industries, there will be winners and losers, and the timeframe is pretty short.


(The excerpts of this blog are reposted here with prior permission from the author. To read the full blog, please click here.)


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Categories: Digital

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Abbie Lundberg

Abbie Lundberg is a business technology analyst, writer and professional speaker with 25 years’ experience reporting and commenting on the ...

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