Summary of Digital to the Core

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Digital business researchers Mark Raskino and Graham Waller report that the latest wave of innovation further erodes the boundaries between the physical and digital worlds. Now, virtually every enterprise must become a technology company or risk irrelevance. Using well-chosen case studies, the authors show how the manufacturers of all kinds of goods are using digital technology to overhaul their products and redefine their businesses. Each chapter closes with “actionable takeaways” for refocusing your firm on digital priorities. Raskino and Waller discuss the changes this shift will provoke in your industry, your firm and your leadership style, and they explain why it’s important to seize the digital moment. getAbstract recommends their guidance to senior executives, particularly those seeking to accelerate change in tradition-bound companies.

About the Authors

As members of the Digital Business Leadership research team at Gartner Inc., Mark Raskino and Graham Waller advise senior corporate executives on technology and business strategy. Raskino is a Gartner fellow and distinguished analyst; Waller is a research vice president.



The Newest Wave of Digital Change

Since the dawn of the Internet, technology has been transforming the business world in successive waves. It started with websites, which gave companies an online presence. Next came e-commerce, which moved customer transactions into the digital world. “Digital marketing” helped sellers reach new markets through social media, search engines and peer-to-peer connections.

The newest phase, “digital business,” brings even deeper change. It involves creating “new business designs by blurring the digital and physical worlds.” Babolet, the French tennis-equipment maker, developed a racquet featuring an embedded digital sensor to gather data about a player’s strokes. GE invested $1 billion in its Global Software Center for harvesting data from multiple sources, even wind turbines or aircraft engines. Automaker Ford is experimenting with self-driving cars using sensors that generate data about the vehicle’s immediate environment. These companies take digital technology “to the core” – transforming their products and how their leaders think about their organization’s place in the world. Ford CEO Mark Fields says the company aspires to be “both...

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