Book: Digital To The Core

Digital to the Core by Mark Raskino and Graham Waller from Gartner, represents a very important addition to the growing literature on digital disruption, digital transformation and digital leadership.

The core argument of the authors is that standing still in an era of turbulent digital change is not an option. Enterprises and leaders must re-master themselves to succeed. Leaders must identify the key macro-digital forces impacting on their industry/organisation then provide leadership at three main levels industry, enterprise and self.

Digital revolution will fail unless the leaders can articulate 3 things:

1) Why must we innovate?
2) Where must we innovate?
3) How much must we innovate?

All leaders need to understand the impact of the digital revolution on their industries, organisations and leadership style.

The core of the book is structured around what the authors call the three primary disruptive forces of the digital age as shown in Figure 1 below:

Resolution Revolution: Sensors will lead to every product and service being digitally remastered. The Internet of Things, Industrial Internet and Big Data will allow us to accurately measure and precisely control things and events. Technology’s ability to capture and process entirely new kinds of data in ever richer detail will underpin the major breakthroughs of the digital age.

Compound Uncertainty: The daunting uncertainty that arises from the complex effects of rapid digital change; uncertainty that undermines and shifts the mind-sets, structures, and practices on which leaders have previously relied. Digital leaders must account for three crucial factors when estimating the timing of markets and digital changes – the ‘triple tipping points’ of technology, culture, and regulation.


Boundary Blurring: Merging of the digital and physical worlds, leading to alterations in the core products, propositions, and possibilities for industries as we know them and softening the dividing lines between industries. The effect then cascades across ecosystems, enterprises, people, and things transforming industries as we know them.
Building on the above, digital leaders must lead their organisation at three distinct levels:
  • Remap Your Industry: How your worldview needs to change. What fundamental industry paradigms must you rethink?
  • Remodel Your Enterprise: What does your enterprise need to become and how will you redefine your company?
  • Remake Yourself: Who do you need to be and how must you remake yourself as a digital era relevant leader?

Numerous case examples are presented to illustrate the key points raised above, with practical advice given on how to get there.

Digital to the Core is a highly recommended read for anyone serious about the impact of digital disruption on their industry, company and self.

More details can be found on Amazon

More reference can be found on future digital leadersGartner

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