The foundation of Digitalization started already in late 60´and early 70´and already back then there where forward looking thinkers realizing the profound effect it would have on society over time. But as general with trends the transformation speed is over estimated in the beginning and the effect over time under estimated
I started to work late 90′ and have ever since worked with how companies can use modern technology to become more competitive. Somewhere around 2000 with the Y2K and dotcom boom some enclaves of people around myself started to talk about digitalization as something separate from that, typically people within marketing and sales discovering how the internet would redefine how they had to work. Steadily and slowly digitalization as a term has spread.
Somewhere 2012 I realized I hade to merge what I had been doing for long into the framework of Digitalization to not be perceived as outdated.
Nowadays Digitalization is used anywhere from newspapers explaining why people lose jobbs to leadership (with a few exceptions) teams trying to figure out how to orient themselves
When our digital native generations get kids they will probably no longer even consider te difference between a analogue and digital world as they will convert and merge.
I believe as the effects of Digitalization is spreading across all of the societies domains it will soon become obsolete to talk about the Digitalization as something separate to our everyday life. What organization are not to some extent using modern technologies in their operation? Most consumers expect seamless integration between the web experience and the physical experience
Out of convenience I use the term multiple times a day to communicate to others why they have to change and what they need to do. I have it on my Linkedin profile to be searchable, my business unit has it in its name, my current assignment has it as a objective
My instinct is that we should already today start to think and organize us as that convergence of the real world and digital has already happened. Keeping digitalization as something you do separate, outside the day to day risk to be more of a respirator to the patient rather than actually addressing the challenges that makes many organisation struggling during changing times. There is so much of poor leadership, missing focus on the customer journey, lack of clarity on competitive business models, old school governance and organisations that if you just adress this first, the digitalization will come as a side product.
I will as of tomorrow do my best to significantly reduce how often I use the word Digitalization and force myself to find other terms instead