The human being in the digital world. This was one of the main themes discussed during the DLDsummer conference last week, a popular German event aimed at a wide range of technology businesses and media professionals. But what is really impacting the digitalisation of the business world in Germany? Here are three key takeaways from key speakers and workshops during the conference:
- Be prepared to put yourself out of your comfort zone
At the HVB start-up breakfast, founders such as Julia Romer at Coolar Refrigerators and Mareile Wolwer at KARLA, the digital data collection of livestock in agriculture, shared some useful tips for other businesses in the agriculture and renewable energy space. First of all, be authentic when you present your startup idea i.e. don’t mention how excited you are to be on stage as this should be a given (or a flat out lie if you hate doing presentations). Also, boost your confidence by putting yourself out of your comfort zone and learn from the experience.
- Do not be afraid to be human
According to Joe Kaeser, president at Siemens, one of the greatest challenges of digitalisation is having to communicate to employees whether or not they will still be of use to the company after this transformation in order to avoid social uprisings. This is an issue which Ashoka, the global network of social entrepreneurs, is also tackling at the moment. In fact, six new German employees at Ashoka were introduced on stage to explain their social work at DLDsummer, some working more or less full-time on their projects ranging from modernising the educational system in the Western world to training former victims of war to be therapists and integrators for refugees.
Ashoka also hosted a DIY workshop together with Change.org on how to create an online campaign which explained the basic objectives of a campaign and the human element behind it. It included a motivating story about how an old woman from the countryside took on the CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement) which highlights the possibilities within a democratic society in the online world.
- The smartphone is revolutionising the digital world
A talk by Tom Goodwin from Havas media, outlined the new way of consuming media and how individuals are being targeted by advertising. There was also a short workshop on how to stalk bank accounts just by using IP and cookies. This shows the most human side of all: Careless digital consumption and being completely unaware of the true digital game-changer. As the event organisers summarised at the end of the event, the smartphone – connecting, changing and digitalising human beings all over the world in a business or private way as we speak.