Digital transformation can unlock business competitiveness and success despite economy

The South African economy is likely to escape a recession and finish the year in positive territory. This may provide some respite for businesses but economists agree it isn’t enough, as the country needs very strong growth for an extended period to start chipping away at an official unemployment rate of 29%.

The National Development Plan, and many economic commentators, place small and medium-sized enterprises, and a spirit of entrepreneurship, at the centre of the country’s medium to long-term recovery. In order to do this, they need to be agile, profitable and digitally relevant.

Serial entrepreneur and renowned global speaker Vusi Thembekwayo believes there are simple but profoundly effective things a business owner can do to make his or her business competitive in the digital age.

Representing Intuit QuickBooks – the leading cloud accounting software – at the Cloud in Practice conference in September 2019, Thembekwayo unveiled four laws to transform businesses, and accounting practices to digital doyens.

  1. Walk the aisles and find the truth

“Not a truth, not your truth, but the actual truth,” says Thembekwayo. He says all business areas have different versions of the truth. “When faced with a loss in market share, marketing will tell you the logo needs to be refreshed and IT will say this is due to the company being locked into legacy systems that aren’t performing at peak.

“Raymond Ackerman walked his aisles once a week, talking to customers, finding the truth,” says Thembekwayo, referring to the man who turned Pick n Pay into the giant retailer that every household knows. “Businesses must find a way to walk their aisles and talk to their customers because when they find the truth, their path to success clears.” Read more on Accounting Weekly.