Digitally Transformed: A Relearning Organization

{ 🏢 } – Digital Transformation From the Ground Up

Credits: Linus Öhman / Disrupt.Re.

This is an attempt to explain digital transformation from the ground up using zero bullsh*t. to pull this off, we need to start with why businesses exist.

If we boil things down to the simplest (first) principles we can say that an organization is: taking input + adding value = creating output.

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The flow of a physical products business made simple. Credits: Linus Öhman / Disrupt.Re.

To make sure we do this in the best way possible we need to know four things.

  1. What’s the expectation of the output?
  2. What do we need, to create the difference, between input and output?
  3. What requirements does that put on the input?
  4. How did the experience meet the expectation? loop back to 1. 🔗

1. Expectations

External — what expectations does the customers/users have?
Internal — what do we expect?
(Mapping all stakeholders is a good idea but let’s keep it simple for now)

External Expectations:

We need to be in constant communication with our customers/users to validate that we are on the right track, meeting or exceeding their expectations. We need to get to know the needs and desires of our customers. If we do this in an organized way we will be able to map out important expectations from all the input. We can then prioritize the expectations and let them guide us in what to focus on while “creating the difference between input and output” in other words, designing the solution.

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Expectations mapped out and selected. Credits: Linus Öhman / Disrupt.Re.

Internal Expectations:

What we try to accomplish can vary greatly and depend on anything from the vision and mission of the organization to this quarters results. But defining this is crucial for knowing if we are doing the right thing. Starting to measure in some direction is more important than getting it 100% right the first time around. Pick some things that seems to make sense and start from there.

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Select a few KPI’s that makes sense now, as a relearning organization we know things will shift. Credits: Linus Öhman / Disrupt.Re.

2. Adding Value

So now that we have an idea of what the customers want, and even better we might know how to exceed their expectations, we start designing solutions. As we design, we realize competence/knowledge/abilities we lack and can reach out to experts and sources of knowledge. We also want to be able to test designs on our customers/users. We know what they want, and we know what we want -it’s a good start. In a perfect world, this should be easy to do with the digital tools we use. So we are going to choose tools that can help us do this.

3. Requirements

Now we come to the granular parts of the product. Driven by the design we have a pretty good picture of what we need in form of material and infrastructure.

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Credits: Linus Öhman / Disrupt.Re.

Starting with what the customers need inverts the classical production cycle.

4. Experience vs Expectation — Connect the Relearning Loop

The most important part is to start the relearning loop as soon as possible and start validating and co-creating the value added. We need everything from sourcing to customer experience to be visible to us. Once we ship v.1 of the product we can start measuring and gathering real feedback from user and customers alike.

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Redrawing the operational model to become a relearning organization. Credits: Linus Öhman / Disrupt.Re.

This is Digital Transformation

Understanding the reasons to be “data driven” and how that translate to becoming a relearning organization. We have to be so close to our customers needs that we can predict what they will want tomorrow. We need to be able collaborate internally and externally as we can’t have all the experts employed every time we need them. As a relearning organization we are constantly reinventing what we do and that means we need super quick, seamless setups for collaboration.

Next is how to connect and test a digital way of working that empowers us to do the above. To summarize the realizations:

We need tools and processes that empower us to see, co-create, design, test and validate our offering seamless with whoever we believe can help us along our path to exceed our customers expectations. From holistic to details, from me focus to all-focus. Anywhere, anytime. When we need it. Ideally we provide the settings for personal and collaborative flow.

We want to enable a natural flow state between complex tasks. Empower ourselves with clarity and clear next steps. We need a new operational model and it needs to be digital-by-default.

A version of this article was first published on

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Linus Öhman Avatar

Linus Öhman / Founder @ Disrupt.Re

Linus Öhman is a creative from Malmö, Sweden, and the mastermind behind Disrupt.Re.