“Hello there”: Initial Expectations for Digital Transformation

Key Points

  • “I want to present niche content that can be discussed without jargon and tied to macro level trends that shape the business terrain we will have to navigate as leaders.”
  • “…we must understand and engage with layer 0 protocol networks like Polkadot to construct a solid foundation for future proof business operations.”
  • “…web 3.0 will enable the industrial revolution of the internet through specialization also known as the division of labor.”
  • “…we need to be able to identify trustworthy actors in a digital environment as well as collaborate across traditional borders.”
Source: https://wallup.net/sunrise-minecraft/

I.AM.HYPED. is how I would describe my energy towards this course. A significant portion of my time spent outside of classrooms is researching and thinking about many of the topics we will cover together this semester. Yet, I have not had a live forum for discussion and debate to prove out useful takeaways. This brings me to my first expectation for this course which is, I expect to be introduced and challenged in depth. Anyone and even AI can read and regurgitate a trending topic, which could be why I rarely find journalists useful. Therefore, bring something new and difficult to get our minds around that lasts all semester because that is how we will know we have reached the efficient frontier of learning.

Now, this first expectation comes as a double-edged sword paired with hypocrisy. What kind of classmate would I be if I didn’t rise to meet my own expectations? This brings me to my second expectation which is I want to present niche content that can be discussed without jargon and tied to macro level trends that shape the business terrain we will have to navigate as leaders. I believe that this approach is the best azimuth to follow if we are to achieve my first expectation. Although, this begs the question, what topics will I attempt to cover this semester? To which I respond, Polkadot and Web 3.0 of course.               

Source: https://aboutbitcoin.io/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/polkadot-network1.jpg

Rather than explain what these two topics are today, I will introduce my three main takeaways that will be covered in their own standalone blog posts this semester. The first being we must understand and engage with layer 0 protocol networks like Polkadot to construct a solid foundation for future proof business operations. My analogy for this is the ongoing state competition for taxpayers which has materialized into a mass exodus from blue/oppressive states like California and New York to red/free states like Texas and Florida. Just like states, layer 0 protocol networks offer similar categories of infrastructure and amenities that can significantly impact a business’ ability to generate shareholder value. Companies will fail to maximize future shareholder value if they do not understand and engage these “digital states”.

Source: https://fee.org/articles/russ-roberts-on-adam-smith-and-the-limits-of-mainstream-economics/

The second takeaway is we need to be capable of translating current business operations to the web 3.0 infrastructure and innovate new solutions organic to web 3.0. If you don’t remember anything else about web 3.0 this semester, remember this, web 3.0 will enable the industrial revolution of the internet through specialization also known as the division of labor. Web 3.0’s inherent nature of being a trustless infrastructure that removes intermediaries and gives users power and ownership over their data, identity, security, and transactions allows this digital specialization to take place. Just like the economies of the late 18th to early 19th centuries, digital organizations will experience substantial increases in productivity and efficiency provided they have leaders capable of guiding this transformation.

Source: https://web3.foundation/

Lastly, my final takeaway is we need to be able to identify trustworthy actors in a digital environment as well as collaborate across traditional borders. The first two takeaways discuss the concepts of digital city-states and digital economies, so this third takeaway will discuss digital citizenship. If the first two exist one can reasonably assume the third will eventually materialize in hybrid and pure forms. Therefore, organizations that undergo digital transformation will no longer be constrained to the information age’s borders of country of citizenship, language, or culture. Instead, they will employ sovereign individuals who will be sought after purely for their capabilities and perspectives.

If any of this sounds nascent or ethereal, then great I am meeting my goal for this semester. Much of what I will present and discuss with you all this semester is still being proven out by software engineers, futurists, and investors far more intelligent than me. However, I can commit to translating how we currently operate in the information age to how we will operate in the digital age. My hope is you all will help me connect the dots along the way with your unique perspectives.

As a side note, I will close each blog post with a list of twitter accounts to follow and/or additional readings that I’ve discovered between each post. This list will be aptly called the “bustle rack” to continue with my theme as a former tank commander now future investment banker.

Bustle Rack

5 comments

  1. Great opening post. I’ve certainly had students pursue one topic deeply all semester with great value. I guess I just also want you to remain open to the possibility of chasing a few rabbits that you might not have known at this point you find interesting. We’ll see!

    1. Of course, there are plenty of other irons in the fire that I can dig into if that’s what the class would want.

  2. Bring the hype! Loved reading your post and starting to realize the broad background of experiences each person brings to the course. Looking forward to the #BustleRack!

  3. Your post made me want to go back and re-do mine! Love the energy, format and highlighting of key points/recommended twitter accounts to follow. I’d also like to adopt your second expectation (present niche content that can be discussed without jargon and tied to macro level trends that shape the business terrain we will have to navigate as leaders) – such a great reminder of why I’m in business school in the first place, and how this class will support such guided exploration and exposure to new trends, themes, concepts, etc.

    1. Thank you for the comment Christina! I am glad you found the post worth your time. Hopefully I earn a similar review of my work when I present next week.

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