In today's chaotic business climate we all need top performing managers. As we watch the unfolding drama of Brexit I am conscious of the stress that comes from the uncertainty of change and the damage that it may have on morale and productivity.
Responding to the rapid and potentially disruptive pace of change in a timely manner is a key attribute required to be the best. Failure is not fatal unless it is failure to change fast enough.
And according to research by McKinsey & Company, about 70% of all changes in all organisations fail.
It's the leaders role to look to bring order to this chaos, give people hope of successful outcomes and enable them to work towards that clear vision for success.
The most detrimental mistake leaders make is not learning how to effectively lead and manage change. Change doesn’t happen because the organisation has a new strategy with a new vision and mission statement.
First change has to be led and second it must be managed with new thinking. The new thinking must then create new behaviour .
Being the best in breed, sector or class takes courage, vision and hard work; and it includes developing leaders to be the best they can be.
The Top Four Barriers to Effective and Rapid Change
Lack of knowledge: Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert Sutton coined the phrase 'the knowing-doing gap' in their compelling book by the same title. They found that there’s a huge gap between what people know and what they do. All that knowledge not being applied, all that talent not being used costs organisations billions of pounds every year. The challenge is to lead the acquisition and use of new knowledge and to enable people to use what they learning more effectively.
Lack of skill and practice: When you practice, you get better at it. Yet diligent and deliberate practice is often missing from management education. Many managers confuse knowledge with skill. They enable people to learn new tools and concepts, but don’t give them time to practice to improve their skills. Skill is the exercise of new knowledge and unless you exercise repetitively little is gained.
Conflicts working against change: Some leaders know what needs to change but fail to lead change. They assume that managers will automatically follow the new vision for change and engage in leading change.
New change initiatives begin to bog down and every excuse in the book is used to explain why. Something powerful is getting in their way. But what?
Most leaders would say that their number one goal is to help their organisation survive, change and flourish. But does every leader recognise what the constraints to change are?
Culture working against change: Research shows that leaders of successful changes get people at all levels deeply involved by keeping them in the loop, listening to their ideas, and encouraging them to take ownership for their part of the change. Sadly, many leaders fail to remove the constraint to change before they engage their people to make the change. It’s as though there are two sets of rules. The 'official' set of rules is posted on your walls, listed on your company website, and printed in your employee handbook. You know that list.
Then there’s the “real” set of rules. That’s the one you hear whispered about in hallways… the one you run into when you make the mistake of speaking candidly in a meeting… the one that actually governs how your organisation works.
It’s the real rules that govern your people’s actions. Change those unwritten rules and you remove the barriers to change.
Give your managers the time they need to develop, collaborate without fear and apply the real change your organisation needs.
Being the Best is the Only Option to Make Change Happen Successfully -
Are Your Leaders Ready for the Leadership Challenge?
Compiled by Nick Horan 11/3/2017
Finding the Time to Think, Reflect, Discover, Learn and
Apply Positive and Successful Change