Too often change efforts in organisations are conceived as operations: management uses people and the organization to move tasks.
This approach might work if the organisation and its environment of operations are relatively stable.
But in complex and turbulent environments / times, I recommend management to shift the approach: to propose tasks that move people and the organization.
This is a fundamental shift that still meets some resistance, but is clearly being more easily accepted lately than for some years ago.
Managers who want to unrealistically keep control of the process in complex and turbulent organisations and environments, will not want to make the shift. As that shipyard that wanted a Gantt chart for the whole change process after having tried for several years, with no success at all, to introduce lean management. That was a requisite so that they could consider if they would hire my services.
Clients who aren’t willing to make the shift will keep asking for:
– A plan for the whole change process as if it is an operation in stable environment and times.
– A compartmentalisation of the activities so that they don’t spill over into other parts of the organization or its value chain.
– Pre-defined KPIs that will determine if the change goals are achieved as planned.
The shift to the second picture is a cornerstone of the seven Design Modules I propose to organisational clients that want to promote change in complex and turbulent environments:
Communities of practice
Real Time & Large Scale organisational prototyping.
Executive coaching to leaders of change
The seven Design Modules can be combined in ad-hoc designs for each specific situation and are the result of my 30+ years designing and facilitating change processes in complex and turbulent environments.