What’s your tipping point for change?

Every organisational change has a tipping point.  And that tipping point can go one of two ways – up or down!

Many of you will know Malcolm Gladwell’s concept of tipping point.  He talks about a tipping point as that moment when an idea, trend or social behaviour tips, or crosses a threshold, so it spreads exponentially.

In organisations there are tipping points for change too.  These tipping points occur at two ends of the scale.

Firstly, there are tipping points in which organisational change reaches a critical mass, where it has achieved buy in and acceptance from stakeholders and end users.  Thereby, helping to ensure the success of the change program.

Secondly, and unfortunately, on the other end of the scale, there is organisational change where people are so over-whelmed by the scale, frequency and pace of change, that there is no buy in or acceptance.

Consequently, not only does the change initiative fail, but the organisation can become paralysed with indecision and inertia, and experience a spike in employee and customer dissatisfaction.

There are many reasons for a lack of buy in, as securing change acceptance can be hard.

It’s made even harder when an organisation’s ambitious change agenda does not take into account the capacity or capability of the organisation to adopt the change.

Time and time again, I’ve seen Project or Investment Committees agree on a long list of projects for the organisation to deliver.  The Committee will examine the projects in terms of the cost to deliver and expected benefits, but it won’t examine whether the organisation is ready, willing and able to cope with the change.

Knowing the totality of change occurring across the organisation, what capability gaps exist in delivery and end user adoption, and how to best sequence the change so that the impacts are well managed is critical.

These are important considerations, as understanding these factors will help you better stage and sequence your roadmap of change initiatives, and also know where to focus capability uplift activities.

So next time you’re planning a change, ask yourself: what effort does my organisation put in to assessing the energy and resources necessary for effective delivery, and its willingness and capability to deliver?

If the answers little or none, perhaps it’s time to do things differently.

It’s time to ensure that your organisation is – ready, willing and able:

  • Ready – the organisation knows where it wants to get to, and has a well-constructed plan for execution, with a logically and thoughtfully sequenced change roadmap
  • Willing – the organisation has effective leadership support and the roles and responsibilities of the change sponsor, project team and leaders are clear, and they are willing to step up and lead the change
  • Able – the organisation has the capacity and capability to execute the change and is able to invest the resources to ensure that impacted stakeholders are well prepared for the change

Change happens, so make it work for you.

Article source: http://www.changemeridian.com.au/whats-tipping-point-change/


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