Have you actually ever taken some time to think about “What is change”?
Lean Six-Sigma, TQM and Process Improvement will create efficiencies and reduce cycle time, of that there is no doubt.
But these improvement programs are not sustainable, if they are temporary surges in cost reduction and in the absence of a whole systems perspective create downstream costs and hidden costs due to regrettable losses of mission-critical talent and employee engagement issues for those who are not involved directly in the improvement teams.
The change needs to pull together the whole system or it will be a short term illusion.
Are large corporates rotten beyond remedy?
Brexit. Trump. VUCA. Now that we have those buzz words out the way lets discuss what is happening in organisations all around the world.
I recently chaired a panel interviewing inspiring women from different countries and backgrounds who have become recognised technology leaders in their fields. There was a lot of collective wisdom about how these women had navigated their careers and succeeded in becoming technology leaders. Here are three highlights from our conversation with the talented Sabah Carter, CIO of News Corp, Judith van de Pas, CIO of Shell Retail and May Yap, Global CIO of Jabil.
Career paths are not linear
As the saying goes – “conflict is inevitable, combat is optional”.
How often have we been in situations where a brewing conflict has made us nervous, and the general thought that has mostly crossed our mind is to take an alternate route or to lookout for knee-jerk steps to resolve the conflict by patchwork, rather than facing it head on? How often have we found the old text book answers about dealing with conflicts as out of place in practice?
Have you ever said a word so many times it begins to sound a bit weird? It’s known as ‘semantic satiation’ and happens when the person saying the word suddenly loses all sense of its meaning. It’s a peculiar phenomenon and one that happens, I believe, to the word ‘Digital’ for so many reasons.
Your organisation will likely have a digital transformation strategy in place and backed up by a digital leadership team and even a digital programme to make it all happen. ‘But’, you may wonder, ‘what is this ‘Digital’ thing and why does it require transformation’?
In 2001 the largest five companies in the world by market capitalisation were GE, Microsoft, Exxon, Citi and Walmart. By 2011 they were Exxon, Apple, Petro China, Shell and ICBC (Bank of China). By 2016 they were Apple, Alphabet (Google), Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook.
What distinguishes GE, Exxon, Citi, Walmart, Petro China, ICBC and Shell from Microsoft, Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook is that the former could all be classed as conventional and the latter can all be classed as post-conventional.
For businesses today, the requirement to be able to change is integral. Continuous Improvement (CI) can be a means of ensuring your organisation is keeping up-to-date with the world around them. Although the challenges are numerous, CI can be successful if organisations consider the following 4 recommendations:
Many organisations embarking on an enterprise-wide transformation to agile working, struggle to sustain or scale the benefits they initially achieve. The journey towards agility is a marathon, not a sprint, and it requires continued commitment, at all levels of the organisation, to ensure agile ways of working stick.
The first six to 12 months of introducing agile throughout an organisation will result in visible improvements in speed to market, productivity, efficiency and employee engagement.
‘Well,' I said. ‘Eventually, the blob will get you. It’s important to run as fast as you can in the early days of your transformation, because organisations have an in-built protection mechanism; the ability to morph into a blob of slime that will eventually catch up with you, surround you in slime and kill you off’.