Friday, September 13, 2019

Take a Mixed Change Management Approach to Go Digital

Change unfolds into a wider multi-dimensionally systemic business continuum, to improve business fluidity and people-centricity.

Due to the “VUCA” digital new normal, today’s business is often operational in crisis and conflict environments. It requires the organizations of all shapes and sizes to reinvent themselves and become highly adaptive, flexible, and responsive. Digital transformation is radical change, communication has to flow via all different directions and organizational hierarchy.  It’s critical to take mixed top-down, bottom-up, inside-out, outside-in, middle-out, and cross-functional system wide approaches to go digital in a multidimensional way.

Top down approach usually results in holistic thinking and planning. Digital transformation is the large scale of changes. It’s like a gigantic puzzle with many misplaced pieces. It takes strategic thinking to perceive the big picture with a clear business vision, objectives, and value streams and shape the top-down oversight. Without the inclusion of a “top down” framework, there is no consensus on which pieces to look for, which pieces are more critical, and how to come up with a holistic solution, In fact, the top down leadership guidance and executive sponsorship is critical for Change Management success. Change needs to be inspired from top-down, as the top leadership team’s commitment will reassure those who have doubts, make sure that the business moves in the right direction and the strategy time horizon. Top-down change approach is beneficial when the organization maintains coherence while allowing autonomy and managing a right balance between exploration and exploitation.

Bottom-up: With emerging digital technologies, many organizations cross vertical sectors are breaking down the overly rigid hierarchy, moving towards open structures and more freedom to those who are linked with the front line. Bottom up approach to change is important because people fell more engaged in providing feedback, taking initiatives to identify problems and solve them. It’s about leveraging collective knowledge and creativity to develop the business change climate and drive change success. If people don’t feel that they are valued, it’s often difficult to bring around changes and sustain changes later on. Make sure business processes and people are integrated to ensure a consistent ability to deliver change results. In practice, the right mix of bottom-up and top-down change management practices are crucial to both embed change into business DNA and integrate change management into strategy management for driving the long term business transformation success.

Inside-out: When a business becomes so complicated with outdated rules or overly rigid processes or procedures, people get frustrated and annoyed by not being able to accomplish work easily, “Inside-Out” approach to change can be understood as a search for simpler concepts and methodologies to improve operational targets and process goals. If looking at it from a business management perspective, it requires some kind of rethinking and reinventing corporate processes, re-tuning the organizational structures, and recombining the differentiated business competency. It’s important to keep trimming wastes and redundancy, set priorities to bring transparency and ensure the business continually moves up to the next level of organizational maturity.

Outside-in: Digital becomes the very fabric of high performing business, being outside-in and customer-centric is the new mantra for operating a high mature digital organization. The outside-in approach to change is about focusing on customer perceptions and experiences, with the goal to transform the company's culture and be dedicated to creating value for their customers. The customer's experience is about how they encounter, observe, or undergo a company's events or stages. Companies lay out an outside-in digital transformation journey which is helpful, positive, and sharing experiences with customers, and evolve the ecosystem for changing and innovating.

System-wide: Digital organizations are hyperconnected, interdependent, always-on and people-centric. The key elements in Change Management include vision, values, cultures, goals, processes, and measurement, etc. To change an organizational system, you must understand the concept of the true meaning of the nonlinear organizational dynamic. Without a system-wide perspective, a single-dimensional change approach perhaps leads to silo or unwanted complication. Radical change often needs to restructure the root of the company such as values, beliefs, and objectives, It's critical to account for cross-cutting concerns, putting a puzzle together requires trying different pieces, being flexible and willing to put a piece aside to find another more appropriate piece. Thus, it’s important to communicate within the spiral of conscious awareness and apply systems thinking and interdisciplinary approach to manage changes in a structural way.

Change unfolds into a wider multi-dimensionally systemic business continuum, to improve business fluidity and people-centricity. It’s important to take a mixed approach to go digital, make proactive change within the expanded digital ecosystem, and improve business maturity from functioning to firm to delight.


Fantastic post.

Really enjoyed reading it and it held my attention all the way through! Keep it up.

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