The 4Ds: A New Business Model for Tomorrow

Article published in French news site by Marc Rose-Quiminal, Project Manager at Prodware

Why is this a pivotal digital revolution moment we are going through?

Because the pandemic has compelled the whole world to adapt to the situation overnight in order to keep on going navigating between remote and in-person modes.

Because digital transformation projects have brought together two different worlds in the workplace: that of Employee Engagement and Customer Experience.

Because these projects which are authentic incubators of new technologies (5G, AI, IoT, Blockchain, etc.), support a new generation of business models.

And above all, we are seeking ways to leverage these advances so that they last and are sustainable.

These different observations and the many questions they raise lead to a new organizational model that is based on the 4 following principles: Diversity, Decentralization, Destination and Deontology.

These principles make up the fundamental pillars of the model of what a digital company of the future will look like.
Combining these four fundamentals in perfect harmony will foster a structured operational approach capable of supporting the digital ecosystem unfolding before us…

How to roll the “Ds”?

Taking into account the 4Ds of this new model enables a company to meet today’s new market requirements.
In that sense, Diversity means inclusiveness, Decentralization suggests interdependence, Destination the “why” and Deontology “ethics.”

Diversity & Inclusiveness

Diversity means being able to gather new talent and resources within a variety. It is about creating uniqueness within plurality. It is all about opening up both within the organization and outside the organization. It is a dynamic of interactions.

Inclusiveness is the exact opposite of Exclusiveness. It is more than just integrating, it is about changing the way we appreciate what a company is.

Diversity and inclusiveness make for better working conditions. This concept means broadening our mindset and calls for more innovations. You need to know how to introduce these notions. Therefore training sessions to learn how to do this are required.

Decentralization & Interdependence

Just like digital currency, which rests on a totally decentralized network that secures all transactions, more “horizontal” than “vertical” changes can be foreseen. Already a few “decentralized autonomous organizations” rely on a secure and transparent network, a network of trust using Blockchain technology – Blockchain, the trust machine. Decentralization goes hand in hand with atomization, accountability and coordination. It converges with the notion of agility and fosters collective responsibility.

Just as we will be using digital currency in the future for our sales transactions, decentralization, also a notion that is set for the future, needs to be thought through. In a renewed trust-based environment where decision-making and managing will take on new meaning, suffice it to say, that the resulting agility to come of all this change will benefit employees who will feel more independent and self-motivation ready.
They will be able, in turn, to develop an open service platform of their digital company.

Destination & “raison d’être”

Diversity and decentralization are not enough to bring new meaning to the so-called digital organization.
It is imperative and urgent that the new digital organization, which in itself is the outcome of the digital transformation phenomenon, work toward rethinking the priorities of the organization to factor in the authentic meaning and “raison d’être” of a company bearing a larger scope of social responsibility.  

As the glue holding together the company, the “raison d’être” brings together people and technologies. Its definition clearly explains what the company is all about: its origin, its essence and the direction it is taking. It is the destiny, design and direction of the company.
Digital transformation encourages companies to bring together people and technologies in harmony. Destination fosters ambition and innovation in a stimulating context of progress.

There isn’t only one way to determine one’s Destination. Everybody can contribute and do their bit.
Diversity and decentralization, brought on by Destination, now actually work together.

Deontology & Ethics

Digital Transformation comes with a demand for a new set of ethics in a digital company.
Ethics that are qualified as more “horizontal”, proactive and long-term are much more adapted. These ethics are better suited than a law currently in effect which is too “vertical, knee-jerk and very short-term.

The new “Chief Ethics Officer” is tasked with creating and implementing this new set of ethics and culture. This officer has a pivotal role in the new digital company. This new “CEO” will be expected to play a key role in fine-tuning the synchronicity between man and machine (AI for instance) and in correcting the asymmetry in information between employees and leaders.  

Table of the 4 “D” Model

We can represent these 4 pillars very simply.
Just like the 4 areas of a business model each component reinforces a given aspect of the economic model.  
The whole representation shows what the organization of the digital company looks like.
The different layers of the model may be developed step-by-step or implemented separately or two at a time and so on…

“4D”ValuesBusiness Model
Economic Viability  
Products/Service Integration/Communication/Quality
Internal/External Work Infrastructure/Capital

Diversity and Decentralization are the respective building blocks of the Digital Organization. Destination is the flagship of this alliance, while Ethics express the spirit of these organizations.
These 4 processes are measurable and will serve the long-term interests of the digital company.
And finally, the entire model ensures innovation readiness to support the future of the digital company.

Going Towards a New Golden Age?

In this era of digital companies, businesses will have to integrate these 4 Ds within their organization.
These 4 layered processes will complement existing models. They will serve as catalysts between Man & Technologies allowing digital companies to take on a more human-centric and responsible approach.

In these times of deep and passionate transformations, predominantly driven by human diversity and new technologies, where Man complements Digital, a whole new dynamic will be unleashed that bodes well for the Golden Age of the Digital Company.