Thursday, May 12, 2022


It is just like the water flowing up, transiting from one state to the other state, continuous improvement is a tough journey.

Organizations are a huge melting pot of various personalities and depending on the generation the employees belong to. Change is inevitable with increasing paces; the promises of effective changes often lead the organization to the next level of business agility and maturity. 

There are both promises and perils in Change Management. The perils of Change Management waste a lot of resources and cause a lot of pain. Metaphorically, on the journey of change, the change management needs to deal with different states of waters – handle tough water smoothly; deal with the snowball effect systematically, and take care of the culture iceberg cautiously.

Learn to swim in the tough water of the information sea: Nowadays there isn't really much of an enterprise without the massive oceans of information that flow through the enterprise at any given split second. Either individually or organizationally, water is tough, there’s turmoil in the information sea, it’s important to learn how to swim in the tough water smoothly, process and refine information to the useful knowledge, dive deeper to gain invaluable business insight for capturing growth opportunities, avoiding hidden pitfalls and dealing with emerging risks effectively.

More broadly speaking, from a business management perspective, there’s information flow, communication flow, idea flow, and talent flow, etc. In the long river of business forming-storming-performing-reforming, it’s important to enforce clarity and transparency in communications of strategic initiatives thereby nipping uncertainty, ambiguity, and doubt which reduces resistance when implementing change. Business management needs to steer their company toward the uncharted water with caution, deal with tough water thoughtfully, keep things clear, streamline its flow, synchronize idea flow and action flow, to improve change management effectiveness.

Learn to deal with the snowball effect systematically: Larger change initiatives are usually associated with strategic imperatives and viewed as critical path elements on the route to enterprise transformational goals. No one factor is usually at fault; there is usually a snowball into the failure of change management. There are varying causes of failures such as scope missed, features added by creep, ineffective processes, skill gaps, etc. Every factor about large business initiates is rooted in the fact that people need to understand what is changing, what the impacts of those changes are, how they fit in the new world, and how they can participate in the change.

If engaging in a large change initiative, it is usually about transformational change, not incremental change. However, keep in mind, the small things are what cause all the problems. There are quite a few root causes of snowball effect in change management. The first effect is that all your estimates of scope, budget, and resource in change management are wrong. The next impact is that almost all of the transformational change is not designed in a structural way. Sometimes, the management thinks they can lay out a high-level "big system" blueprint without addressing the small things. But often, the small things are what cause all the problems.

Learn to take care of the culture iceberg cautiously:
Culture inertia is one of the biggest pitfalls in change management. The vivid metaphors for describing culture are like the visible and invisible levels of an iceberg - the solid-state of “water.” The visible elements on the surface, such as actions or behaviors, make much sense with recognizing and understanding the underlying mindsets, expectations, and assumptions, as well as values and beliefs often being under the surface.

There are stereotyping and elements of ethnocentric culture as well as there is also subculture. If you take the visible aspects of culture -the tip of the iceberg alone as an element of the strategy execution or change management, you may well head into trouble, hit the pitfalls. It’s critical to gain an in-depth understanding of underlying culture elements such as corporate values or beliefs, articulating them and assessing whether they are still the right ones for the current environment. Organizational change management capability can be built into the organizational culture, germinating (seeding) a culture of change, sharing vision and values, developing Centers of Excellence and high-performance culture that can adopt and adapt to change during the change process.

It is just like the water flowing up, transiting from one state to the other state, continuous improvement is a tough journey. It will take some time due to the maturity of the organization. There are a variety of parameters that impact change management success. This is true whether the change is technical or process oriented. Every organization has a tolerance for the variance which, when exceeded, produces a failure scenario. It is important for integrating Change Management into strategic level business processes and practices, ultimately building change as a strategic management capability.


Post a Comment