From Paper to Practice: customized programs to support bringing your transformation efforts to life.
Perhaps you’ve been saying to yourself…
- If this change initiative fails now, it’s going to have consumed precious monetary and time resources that could have been deployed in many other places to produce a measurable return.
- I’ve spent time and money on this strategy… I need it to work.
- If things don’t change, it’s going to get really, really bad – for all of us.
- I just need my team to take that strategy and implement it. Why is that so difficult?
- The worrying thing is, if this change initiative fails, employees trust in the organization will plummet and they won’t have any more faith or confidence the business, the brand or in me as the leader.
The reality is, addressing employee needs, getting them on board and making sure the implementation of your strategy brings about some quick wins that they care about, even if it’s not the big money-making outcome you desire first – is the only way to keep your change and transformation initiative alive.
Risks of not doing this are:
- Employees nod, executives pay lip service but nothing changes.
- People get so caught up in the change rumor mill that productivity, sales and customer satisfaction suffer.
- Money is spent on developing the strategy, but the recommendations don’t get implemented, so ultimately nothing changes and you’ve spent money on documenting a strategy.
- Your competition successfully implement their transformation initiatives and claim larger market shares, while you’re still working top-down and expecting your executives to implement the change outlined in your new strategy.
None of these are desirable outcomes to your change and transformation program.
What you need is:
- Create a transformation team or office so that change efforts across the organization are centralized, not scattered. This helps you avoid having efforts that cancel each other out, fight for resources or end up not working well together.
- Organize your change efforts so that you can create small wins early on. This will get more people behind the transformation because they will be able to see and feel benefits – specifically benefits that directly impact them – quickly which creates a sense of trust and ease.
- Get your team and employees on board so that they can see and reinforce the need and benefits of the change to the organization. This reduces rumors from developing and creates positive information flow throughout the organization at all levels.
If the lack of movement around your transformation program is driving you crazy right now, examine these 3 areas that tend to cause the most stalling:
Not being able to transform the strategy into actionable items, resulting in slow and drawn out implementation as teams try to figure out the roadmap from where they are to where they “ought” to be.
Lack of communication and transparency leading to rumors and demotivation across the organization.
Scattered efforts and a lack of a central “transformation office”, making it difficult for your leadership team to have visibility over the roll-out of the change initiatives resulting in an inability to intervene if and when necessary.
5 things missing from most change and transformation consulting
70% of change efforts fail [HBR’s “Cracking the Code of Change” by Nitin Nohria and Michael Beer]
That’s a lot of wasted money, resources, energy and productivity.
So, what are the 5 things most change and transformation efforts do wrong?
- They don’t recognize the criticality of getting their teams on board. You can have the best strategy and the best plan, but if your people aren’t sold on the change, nothing changes.
- They don’t address how to manage the overlap between the existing day-to-day work and that of the transformation and change initiative.
- They hold off on communication until everything is ready for implementation – and the rumor mill is running 100 miles a minute. Transparency throughout the process is a huge benefit, starting from before the final strategic decisions have been made. The sooner you begin communicating, the sooner you’ll be able to get your teams warmed up to the idea of change.
- They are unable to find the balance between democratic and autocratic decision making. There are elements of your change initiative that need to be more open and encourage discussion. However, when things don’t move forward and get tabled at every meeting with no final decision, there has to be a designated decision maker who can intervene and keep things moving.
- They don’t have a realistic scope and/or timelines. Sometimes you’ll need to speed things up, sometimes slow things down. Flexibility is key, but so is realistic scoping and a constant finger on the pulse. Otherwise, you might find that you shoot for the stars but don’t even get to the moon.
Throughout my years as a consultant there’s one thing that I see over and over again: organizations spending millions of dollars on strategy development, only to end up with a large PowerPoint deck and very little, if anything, implemented in the years to come.
And in the end?
A waste of valuable resources, including money and employee time, but also a loss of morale among employees.
This led to the creation of my From Paper to Practice programs – three distinct programs of varying levels of engagement and involvement to help you and your team take your strategy and implement it.
Get your executives and their teams on board with the transformation so that the friction associated with change is eliminated and they are supportive and willingly do what is required to implement the new strategy.
Put together a change and transformation team that will implement the changes of the initiative, bringing it all to life.
Create the program implementation structure and governance framework that will give you and your team visibility over the implementation of the change initiative so you are fully aware of progress and can intervene when needed.
From Paper to Practice: Program Structure & Content
- Designing the Transformation Office + Team to work on implementing the strategy, managing the change and communicating the change to the organization
- Breaking down your strategy into projects + actionable tasks for implementation
- Creating a communication plan to create openness and transparency across the organization
- Creating a change management plan, including a communication framework to update stakeholders (team, reporting, documentation) and provide visibility as well as get issues resolved in a timely manner
- Creating the first quick win(s) by implementing the first few initiatives
- Rolling out the communication plan to engage with people across the organization, squashing rumors, opening up two-way dialogue and creating channels for employees to speak through and receive information that they need
- Identifying gaps (people, skills, teams, training) during roll-out and incorporating them in the implementation plan
- Managing the change initiatives and communicating with the stakeholders, through a structured communication and reporting format
- Reviewing expected outcomes with results and feedback from stakeholders and employees
- Creating changes and adjustments to the implementation plan for the initiatives
- Creating changes and adjustments to the change management plan
- Creating changes and adjustments to the communication plan
Training and coaching for you or your transformation lead over the course of a few weeks, so you can create your implementation plan and begin rolling out your transformation.
Training and coaching for you, your transformation lead and the transformation team as well as co-creation of the implementation plan throughout the training.
Creating and hands-on support in implementing and rolling out your implementation plan with you, your transformation lead and the transformation team.
I’m Sarah. A management consultant turned business owner with over 15 years of consulting experience. I always knew I wanted to build and run my own business – not just because I wanted time and location freedom, but also because I wanted to be able to create a larger impact on people and businesses by using my unique skills, knowledge and experience.
I’ve always been drawn to change and transformation. I’ve had plenty of experience with different types of change in my consulting career – from organization design and development to mergers and acquisitions and digital transformations.
Explore working with me on your change and transformation journey by scheduling a free consultation using the calendar below. I look forward to connecting with you and finding out more about your journey, your needs and whether my From Paper to Practice program can support and guide you towards the success your organization very much deserves.
Set up your complimentary consultation using the calendar below.