Let’s take a closer look at seven key words you might hear and what they signal.
“We’re switching over to SAS for data analytics and need to ensure the implementation goes smoothly.”
Implementations usually involve a fixed change that happens at a specific moment in time. What's needed is a common language which will provide the capability to uncover success barriers and ensure people invite new systems, software or procedures.
“We’re rolling out this new process to address the problems we've been facing in our supply chain.”
Unlike an implementation, a rollout is typically phased out over a long period of time, and often has a cultural or intangible component to it. It’s not something that can be changed with the flip of a switch. Depending on where the organization is in the process, you may need to provide a combination of innovation and change experiences, or you may only need to focus on the change component.
“We haven’t done a good job of communicating in a way that gets people excited about new initiatives and new opportunities.”
This is a common challenge when a change is introduced and leaders fail to articulate why and how it benefits each individual from their point of view. Change workshops are available to not only builds leaders’ awareness and capability in this area, but also produce new insights and help them accelerate projects going forward. If the solution is still being worked on, consider training that includes practice with both creative habits (including field research) and change approaches.
“People are afraid of new technology, don’t want to upgrade and are falling behind with outdated technical skills.”
While digital natives may be more comfortable with changes in technology, the speed of digital transformation means that everyone runs the risk of falling behind. Leaders need to know how to mitigate organizational barriers to adopting new technology, uncover and address their own potentially unproductive leadership habits, and ensure people commit to new mindsets and behaviors.
Buy-In [Stakeholder Alignment]
“If key stakeholders involved in this change don’t buy into it, it’ll never get off the ground.”
An important step in making sure a change succeeds is aligning key stakeholders who will have a role or be affected by it. Including these people or groups in change workshops will not only give them a common language and understanding of the change process, it will also help them feel more connected to the new direction and take more ownership of its success.
“As an organization, we need to be more agile and resilient in the face of rapid change and embed this in our company's culture.”
With constant change the reality today, you will hear more and more executives talk about the need to approach change more effectively and build a culture that’s adaptable and resilient. A way to provide this foundation is with a general workshop that gives people hands-on experience with proven approaches to successful change as they work through a low-risk change experience. This will help employees to build the confidence and competence needed to tackle change head-on.
“To realize culture change successfully across the organization, we'll need to scale our change behaviors and capabilities."
Whether your organization is growing at an incredible pace or is right on the cusp of something great, scaling company culture remains paramount to success and your identity as a business. As you grow, you'll want to maintain what's been working — and phase out what might hold you back. Map out where leadership wants your organization to go and effectively communicate that throughout teams, divisions and new recruits.
Of course, this isn’t every phrase or key word you’ll hear, and there are plenty of nuances and special cases where different solutions will apply. But as a general guide, this will get you started with some of the most common challenges organizations face today.
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