“Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so, almost everybody gets busy on the proof.” – John Kenneth Galbraith
As we close one year and welcome a new year with grand fervor fit for the occasion, many of us are deep in the process of planning...planning for change...planning for dynamic change.
Dynamic change 2.0
Today’s fast-paced economy and super-shifting business climate demands that businesses change or die. Few companies manage transformations as well as they would like. Fifty to eighty percent of all change initiatives within businesses fail. Reflect on what you wanted to change in 2017. If you were not as successful as you had planned, you are not alone. In fact, you are in good company.
Between 1980 and 1995, researchers at the Harvard Business School tracked the impact of change efforts among Fortune 100 companies. Only 30 percent of those initiatives produced an improvement in bottom-line results that exceeded the company’s cost of capital and only 50 percent led to an improvement in market share price. Each of the companies invested $1 billion in change programs over the 15-year period. WOW! That's a big investment with dismal results and return.
For years, I have witnessed companies struggle with creating a better workplace, good profits, and true growth by introducing improvements into every function and process. But the competitive pressures keep increasing, the pace of change keeps accelerating, and companies MUST continually search for higher levels of quality, service, and overall business agility. The treadmill moves faster, companies work harder, but results improve slowly or not at all.
One problem is that too few people at each level of the organization really support the initiative with their hearts and minds. To foster pro-active effort and imaginative thinking, not only must you engage more people, you must engage them more fully. The tone at the top (beyond ethics and compliance) is critical to positive emotion toward change and unified engagement. Reference our previous blog: Leadership and Inspiring Positive Emotions
Change is intensely personal. For change to occur in any organization (businesses, associations, even families), each individual must think, feel, or do something different. Even in large organizations, that depend on thousands of employees and other stakeholders understanding company strategies well enough to translate them into appropriate actions, leaders must win their followers one by one.
Where do we falter?
Part of the problem stems from our reluctance to move away from applying mechanistic models that were first used in scientific management under the legacy of one of the first management consultants, Frederick Winslow Taylor. These principles were first applied to managing physical work in manufacturing plants in late 1800s and early 1900s. When superimposed on the new model of today’s knowledge organization, change initiatives are broken into pieces and then the pieces are managed. But today change is dynamic and the pieces are constantly in motion. The challenge is to innovate mental work – not to replicate physical work.
Bringing dynamic change to your organization - with a bit of help
How will you innovate mental work and manage dynamic change in your business in 2018? What new models do you need to explore? What expert resources do you require? How will you lead in this new paradigm?
Dynamic change in business is not a DIY project. We would love to start the conversation about how we can help you bring dynamic change to your organization more efficiently, effectively, and with less stress on everyone. We can help you implement changes that contribute to a better workplace, good profits, and true growth even when change is driven by compliance and legislation.
We help leaders to be effective by recognizing and utilizing their competencies while adapting their behaviour in situations that require a different approach. Our key tools and resources for leading dynamic change include: Emotional Intelligence, TRACTION (EOS Model), Net Promoter System, and the Emerson Suite.