The new year party is over and everyone turns to wonder what the new year will be like. And then you start to think about what are you going to do to make it better and different. Of course there are plenty of articles and blogs to suggest some ideas — and this is one of them! In this context a blog by Rosabeth Moss Kanter stands out with some excellent ideas about doing change.
In a recent tutorial, Prosci proposed some models for organising a change team with a project team. They came up with four models described below. I think they missed the most important model. Read through the article and see if you agree with me.
I have written in the past about the need for change in an organisation being driven by strategic change outside. A recent article in the Harvard Business Review on Transient Advantage by Rita Gunther McGrath (one of my favourite management authors) shows that there are internal drivers for change which are just as powerful. This is particularly relevant for Fast Growing businesses.
McGrath identifies 5 stages of growth and decline that an entrepreneurial business goes through to seek and exploit a competitive advantage. She argues that a sustainable advantage (one that once secured is there for ever) is a fallacy and that competitive advantage comes and goes as markets and technology change. To continue to be successful a business should cycle through a number of competitive advantages by repeating her stages of growth and decline.
A comment piece in a recent edition of the economist looked at lessons that the rest of the world can take from the collaborative projects in Big Science. Big Science is things like the Large Hadron Collider at CERN at which the existence of the famous Higgs Particle was demonstrated to world wide interest.
The Economist author took away two interesting lessons from this article:
- Postpone decisions until the latest possible time.
- Challenge all assumptions and assertions — the only limitation is that imposed by fundamental physics.
These have a powerful message for the way we do change.
Click here to read about the implications
Recent data reported by Prosci show that both the amount of change expected by organisations and the number of organisations saturated by change have increased. This is a gloomy outlook given the problems most organisations have in doing change. Lets put these three ideas together and see what can be done.