Get the transformation edge.
Over a third of all change projects fail. That’s why Change Factory has developed a model for organisational transformation. Based on research it has been proven to work across sectors as diverse as telecommunications, banking, petroleum, insurance, utilities, government and hospitality. It works in projects ranging from strategic realignments to growing sales, improving customer service, or the implementation of new business systems. Together with our ongoing research and more than ten years of experience, we can provide insights that will help you get the transformation edge.
The Change Factory Organisational Transformation Model
Change Factory’s Organisational Transformation Model comprises six components that are critical for a successful transformation project. Each component in turn comprises three elements. Experience and research have taught us that for every element that is missing, the probability of project failure increases.
While many models or methods demand the engagement and support of the Executive Team before a project can begin, the Organisational Transformation Model recognises that many organisational transformation projects actually start in middle management rather than right at the top. It calls for a robust strategic vision which delivers a clear shared purpose among all parties involved in the project. It also requires a thorough evaluation of alternatives to the desired future state and a robust calculation of the project’s return on investment.
Gaining regular input from — and engaging the support of — the Executive Team is crucial to the success of any organisational transformation project. A successful project requires an appropriate and regularly-reviewed budget, as well as sound governance arrangements including a steering committee or similar with regular reporting schedules — all of which need to be accompanied by active advocacy from members of the Executive Team.
The capabilities of the project team are integral to any organisational transformation project. Team members need to work together and leverage appropriate skills, while building a strong understanding of the project’s success factors beyond those established on a two-dimensional project plan. They also need to understand the status quo — it’s hard to work out what changes are required to reach your desired future state if you don’t know where you’re starting from. Where necessary, project teams should be encouraged to gain the skills required for effective execution, whether through recruitment or training.
Change is lasting when it influences end users to change their behaviour, and influences managers to adapt to and accept new priorities. Among the activities required to drive lasting change, communication is often overlooked and underfunded, even though it represents the single best way to influence both individuals and the organisation as an entity. A detailed stakeholder management plan is central to both effective communication and gaining a critical mass of supporters, while linking project outcomes — and end user behaviour — to a strong performance management scheme with real consequences is important to making the change last.
Organisational Transformation is more likely to succeed when the organisation is willing to accept the change — which in itself is more likely if the planned change is integrated well with existing organisational control systems and culture. In addition, consideration must be given to the way in which those control systems and culture need to be adjusted in order to embed the change. To effect that change, the project team should engage in process mapping and re-engineering and a review of the organisational structure. A competency gap analysis and a strong focus on explaining ‘what’s in it for me?’ help enable transfer of learning back to the workplace and increase the probability of success.
The probability of a successful organisational transformation is increased by careful training design that is based on a detailed gap analysis between current and required skill levels — including in the analysis those who provide learning and development services. In addition, training needs to be multi-modal and designed to cater for different audiences, and the training strategy must take into account the support required after the change is realised. Above all, skills development needs to be part of a continuous improvement cycle that includes regular measurement of transfer to the workplace.
For more information about our approach to organisational transformation, or to discuss your transformation project, contact us today.