Thursday, May 24, 2018

The Synthesizing Competency of Digital Organizations

Synthesizing Business Competency = Holism + Interdisciplinarity

In general, analysis is understanding the thing by examining it as parts; synthesis is understanding a thing by examining it as a whole. Synthesizing business competency is developed, combined, integrated or reconfigured by a set of cohesive business capabilities dynamically to address rapidly changing in the business environment. Here are three synthesizing business competencies for running digital organizations.

Synthesizing change management: Understanding the essence of changes is critical to improving the success rate of change management. Change should be viewed as an "opportunity" for either solving business problems, improving productivity, delighting customers, cutting costs or optimizing products/services/processes. Change shouldn’t be just a few random business initiatives, it has to become an ongoing organizational capability and synthesizing business competency. Otherwise, companies can only react to changes, outer impulses or business crisis in a bureaucratic way. Synthesizing change management means that you have to think holistically about change, know what is an acceptable outcome, what resources change needs to leverage and how urgently to act, as well as how to make change sustainable. The change mechanism has to be woven into communication, process, and action of the organization. In addition, there are both tangible and intangible factors in Change Management, you have to understand both and synthesize them to change competency. Often, the severe problem facing business is its inability to perceive a change in the environment and adapt timely when conditions require it. To practice synthesizing change management, you have to define the change situation and the desired result before plowing into any effort, from measured progress to critical survival. Pre-contemplation, contemplation, envisioning, decision, preparation, action, adjustment, maintenance are all the logical steps in managing change scenario and building synthesizing change competency.

Synthesizing problem-solving competency: Traditional problem-solving approach is analytical - break down the bigger problems to the smaller pieces in order to be understood, and solve them step by step. It is practical. However, many of today’s problems are over-complex and interdependent, that means, besides breaking down, you need to combine or integrate different pieces of answers to ensure a cohesive and premium solution to larger problems with less side effect. Synthesis is necessary to summarize understanding of the part of problems and to transfer information about it to others, form a connected whole, and ensure contextual understanding, in order to come up with a better solution by taking a longer-term approach. Analysis without synthesis is a reduction. Synthesis without analysis is intuition. They should complement each other in order to build superior problem-solving competency.

Synthesizing Performance Management: The larger the organization, the more and more isolated business goals become when considered in the context of the organization's enterprise goals. Often in these environments, each one of departments measures on their own success, the department actually rewards or incentivizes behaviors that enhance the appearance of the performance of that department at the expense of other parts of the organization. Thus, the overall performance management is frequently retarded or prevented by how organizations define success on the individual or departmental performance level. In modern socially responsible companies, it isn't just about WHAT (performance result) you have achieved, but also about WHY (the strategic vision) and HOW (the decision-action scenario) to run a business for achieving high-performance business results. Further, with hyperconnectivity nature of digital organizations, it is important to connect the dots between performance management and other management disciplines, such as strategy management, talent management, and change management, etc. Building the synthesizing business competency intends to improve the whole rather than the part of the organization by encouraging to answer the "WHY" questions about a system. Synthesizing performance management Competency = Holism + Interdisciplinarity. Individual goals typically are goals that are based on a subsection of a department's goals, and the division goals are always the coherent part of the company’s goal to realize the long-term business vision.

Businesses are over-complex, hyper-competitive and interdependent business dynamic, the management has to continue exploring synthesizing management approach; involve not only putting the bits together but blending them in such a way that the emergent whole is somehow more than the sum of its parts. It is all about understanding and examining the whole, building synthesizing competency for managing changes, solving problems, assessing & accelerating performance, and driving digitization seamlessly.


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