I think we can all agree that we have never experienced such frantic change as we currently experience, at least not at such a world-wide scale. There may have been periods of rapid change before, but not spread widely across the globe in the way we currently see. Revolutionary ideas, technologies and trends seem to crop up wherever. And, through internet and our physical mobility, they can spread like wildfire across the globe.
In this environment, if you stand still, you will soon be left in the dust, perhaps even reduced to a memory from days gone by.
That goes for change management consulting and consultants too.
Historically, change management has been about moving client organisations from an obsolete steady state….. to a new state, improved but still steady. That approach won’t fly any longer.
In todays environment of rapid and constant change, change management has to be about moving a client organisation from an obsolete steady state to a state of agility, a state of constant change readiness and development.
This is a much more fundamental change. Designing and implementing process changes, reskilling and reshuffling people just won’t do. Agility has to get engrained in the DNA of the organisation. Running a change programme without improving the capability of the organisation to change by itself is to short change your client. Honest consultants don’t manoeuvre to make clients dependent on them. They help clients to solve their own issues and to continuously improve.
If you’re familiar with me and my blog, you know what will follow and can stop reading here ;-)
As improved collaboration and peer-to-peer communications of employees is a key factor to improve agility, enterprise social networks (ESN) should be leveraged or a be introduced in any modern change management effort; building bridges between silos, improving transparency and understanding of the organisation and of colleagues, boosting the capacity of catching signals of change or threat and the speed of relaying them to the right people, even if you don’t happen to know who they are, and ensuring that the leader’s messages on strategy and “state of the organisation” can be communicated without distortion throughout the organisation.
But there’s more. Not only do ESN enable the organisation to be more agile and resilient in the long run, they can also be leveraged to facilitate the change management effort. But more about that in an upcoming blog post.
Do you agree with me about changing from state A to state B is yesterday’s news? Any experience or difference of opinion to share? Please do, in the name of transparency and knowledge sharing.