Strategic change from within (Transformation Management)
Change has become an everyday topic. And change management is today a natural tool for well-trained managers. It is precisely here, however, that a many serious mistakes are still being made. We at C/O/N/E/C/T/A are experts in “transformation management”, change from within. If you want to take the necessary steps towards change together with your employees and are looking for professional support, then you have come to the right place.
- Management of “system defence” in the event of changes
- Successful handling of emotions in the centre of successful change management
- Selection of the right players
When two companies “marry” in an M&A process, different cultures always come together. Mergers often fail in retrospect due to soft factors. We at C/O/N/E/C/T/A try to recognize the different patterns are premises at an early stage and integrate them in the best possible way using a “both-and” approach. In the end, the organisation as a whole should win. But there are other reasons for the need for cultural development. Sometimes the old culture no longer fits in with the current market conditions or the future and adjustments have to be made in areas like the management style, communication patterns and paths, perhaps even at the heart of the structure. A typical situation is dealing with the company’s regulatory and compliance guidelines. To what extent is it felt to be supporting the culture of dealing within the company and above all in sales, is an important factor for success.
- Tracking down one’s own values and adapting them for the future
- To recognise the influence of the culture on performance and demotivation
- Support the management of structure-related areas of tension through the appropriate culture
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The problem has to be big enough
When it comes to changing existing structure and habits, there is a key issue: the problem must be big enough. Organisations are inherently slow when it comes to change. Only if the threat is big enough to jeopardise its’ survival, will it make a change. If the threat is big enough, the organisation will set a change in motion. If you want to change your business, you have to challenge the status quo. In times of crisis it is comparatively easy because the environment (the economic system, the market …) takes over this role. In “normal” times, it is up to you to deliver the bad news and skillfully manage the company’s “system defence”, which is inevitably triggered.
Is your vision attractive?
A threat alone is not enough. On its own, it leads to anxiety and suffocates movement. Organisations and their employees start to move when there is an attractive vision for them. It is important to clearly distinguish visions from goals. Goals are measured in numbers and are targeted at people’s minds. Visions are mental images or “films” that reach people’s hearts. As a manager, you should be able to create vivid and attractive visions and then translate them into understandable goals. Don’t be surprised if many people don’t follow them if you only focus on setting goals and forget the vision.
Together with the “right people”
An essential aspect for successful change comes from within the selection of the right players. Such a selection is necessary because of the lack of time and the speed of communication nowadays means that not everyone can be equally involved. Today it is a matter of bringing the essential key players on board and managing change together with them. For us, the “key players” are not necessarily the friendliest or most intelligent or the most obedient or independent in the company. The goal is to select the key players in such a way that as many employees as possible feel represented by these key players. Criteria is applied here. This means that the first step is to consider the most important selection criteria and then decided which people in the company best meet this criterion. At the end of this process you have a short list of people who represent the entire company as while and all its major cultural dimensions. Everyone else can be effectively and efficiently incorporate into the change process during large group events.
Interests, needs, emotions
At C/O/N/E/C/T/A, we believe that the management of emotions is at the centre of successful change management. We pay close attention to the feelings of those involved because they provide an insight into the interests, wishes and needs of the people involved. Experience shows that these deeper motives are not so easily addressed. However, this is exactly what makes it important, so that change is implemented together. We are experts at bringing these motives forward and helping you find the right solutions for everyone involve.
When we set up change projects, we pay particular attention to the transparent structures and clear tasks. Simplicity and transparency are important to us, we spend a lot of time, making sure we know what terms mean in a specific corporate culture. For example, trading companies have very different requirements than industrial companies or state organisatons, private companies are different to shareholder-driven companies. We consider the reliability of agreements to be a central control variable here. Companies find it difficult to implement change projects if the agreements related to the change project are not adhered to. This does not mean that agreements cannot be altered. But it does mean that they have to be changed by both sides working together. Following these rules means that “change from within” is an easy path to follow.