Monday, May 23, 2016

Change Assessment and Measurement

Measures or KPI is a strong tool, that can be both rewarding but also cause damage to an organization.

The speed of change is accelerating, organizations are shifting from the industrial speed to the digital speed; from inside out - operation-driven to outside in - customer centric. Change is no longer just a one-time business initiative, but an ongoing business capability. And Change Management becomes one of the crucial management capabilities to accelerate strategy execution and  improve business performance. But how to assess and measure change more effectively?


Assessment is a good starting point to change: When starting the change process, perhaps measures are a good place to start change. Change Management is necessary and challenging when you diagnose the following symptoms, and perhaps assessment is a good starting point to change.
-Change becomes necessary when an organization fails to meet its performance goals, 
-"Tell me how you will measure me and I'll tell you how I will behave." People's behavior usually responds to how they are measured. Does this mean that you are applying the wrong measures at a personal and group level? Therefore, in order to detect that is not congruent with group goals. 
-The problem is actually more complex. Information systems have been built in the firm around those measures. Its systems are more rigid and slower to adapt.
-Workflows and business processes based on old measures and well aligned with them are even more resistant to change. This picture puts the practice of change management in a gloomy context.


Measures or KPI is a strong tool, that can be both rewarding but also cause damage to an organization: It's not the use of KPIs per se, but the applications of those that lead to behavior that conflicts with group goals. Ultimately the success of the change program is measured by results that are important values to the organization, and the cultural adoption of these goals is part of that measure. If these values have not been clearly identified at the outset, you cannot get the true alignment of your organization and all working toward the same goals and outcomes, and you lack clarity and purpose of direction. The appropriate KPIs correctly applied can lead to significant benefits. The problem with many KPIs is that they are created and applied at a subordinate level without taking into consideration the possible implications on the organization as a whole. This way too often leads to suboptimal decisions which are detrimental to overall performance. Hence, when the need for change becomes apparent, the management should turn the spotlight on measures and incentives as drivers of behavior, creators of sub-optimal decisions and the eventual poor outcomes. A change manager needs to assess and evaluate every specific scenario to create the change program success.

Performance Management and Change Management go Hand-in-Hand: Change is not for its own sake, but to improve both individual performance and business performance. The majority of Change Management fail because of poor performance management. The lack of accountability keeps companies from reaching their potential. It saps confidence and encourages a passive, excuse-based culture. There’s a need for organizations to change their culture where people are accountable for performance. Change management and performance management should go hand-in-hand in order to improve change effectiveness. Seek employee accountability for results, not activity. Establish a "sense of urgency" required to drive change in the organization, make leaders and managers responsible and accountable for wrong decision making and missed goals, stop the blame culture and finger pointing towards others or external factors for poor performance.


If the change is to benefit the organization and the individual who is implementing the change, then it can be measured when the objectives of the change are realized and the organization is moving forward. But keep in mind, not only measure things right, more importantly, to measure the right things for encouraging positive thinking and behaviors, break down silo thinking, leveraging trade-offs, to ensure business as a whole achieving the optimal business result.


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