Saturday, October 17, 2015

How Capable is your Organization Handling Changes

Change cannot be just another thing that needs to be accomplished. It has to be woven into communication, process, and action of the organization.

Change becomes fundamentally difficult in most organizations because it is treated as something distinct from running the business, evolving performance and increasing results over time. Leaders and employees are stressed enough in getting done what is right in front of them that change is layered upon becomes disruptive. However, the accelerating speed of change, the volatile and uncertain business environment make the change as an ongoing capability organization must master, so in which aspects the business should focus on to building its change ‘muscles’?

Diagnose the Root Cause to Change Resistance: The perspective that 'people resist change' has reasons. It is entirely possible that the resistance is symptomatic of a number of deeper causes, one of which is that the change has not been properly defined, aligned or considered in respect to potential undesirable effects and appropriate mitigation strategies. Mindset is very important. It can be managed through the active participation of the leadership demonstration that the mindset is a part of the culture. What is harder is at the top to create the change that they want and need. If the people affected are not involved then change can be very hard to implement. However, if the staff is involved, & they are aligned to in the right direction and then they are supported then change can be very simple and quick. Embrace the change 'Blocker' and convert blockers into champions before now and with an amazing result. helping people cope with the experience of change is fundamental to the process.

Change Leadership/management effectiveness: The issues that will prevent change from happening are likely to be the leadership vision, communication, and style. The roadblocks to change include, but not limited to lack of direction, internal politics, current culture/blame, not aligned systems/processes, too much hierarchy or centralization. This leads to lack of motivation/urgency or poor performance. This also leads to frustration, the top and bottom lines not being achieved, losing market share. So much of the efforts are aimed at managing standalone "change" change efforts, where maybe underlying culture is the biggest obstacle. To paraphrase a saying " If an elephant wants to sit, I can encourage it to sit.... if it does not want to sit, there's nothing I can do to get it to." Tactically, it helps to take a complex issue that needs to be changed and break it down into easy parts and then allocate them, then it can be easy to implement to create the overall change. Because often, management is overly focused on the technological element of change, but lacking WHY and HOW to do it effectively.

Focus on problem-solving and business improvement. The complexity question differs from one organization to another. For example, a local company is less complex than a global company: a company that operates only in the U.S. would probably be less complex than one that operates in several nations. Also, if the change initiative involves customers or vendors, the effort will require more moving pieces. What else adds to complexity? Having a change model is great, but without the buy-in from the individuals that are impacted, change won’t happen or sustain. A complex problem rarely has a simple solution. 'There is always a well-known solution to every human problem--neat, plausible, and wrong, to quote Russell Ackoff: 'The only problems that have simple solutions are simple problems." The only managers that have simple problems have simple minds. Problems that arise in organizations are almost always the product of interactions of parts, never the action of a single part. Complex problems often do not have simple solutions, some may look simple, but there is a lot of effort need to put in. So the goal is to pursue an optimal solution.

A changeable organization is to creating organizations where change is the norm (though not for its own sake) and happens the whole time thereby delivering faster and increasing market share. Change cannot be just another thing that needs to be accomplished. It has to be woven into communication, process, and action of the organization. In today's work environment. It takes a lot of energy to break old habits and out-dated thought processes, but change is happening at a more rapid pace. If you make change part of your routine, then change becomes easier to deal with.


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