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Little Find

Avoid project mode, empower employees instead

Did you know: Over 85 percent of US companies have committed to a business transformation program, but 70 percent end in failure. How can that (still) be possible?

3 misconceptions are likely to spell immediate failure: 

1- Belief in much-vaunted project mode. Your organization is not a simple structure that you can grow via a series of transformation projects. Its complex nature means you have to abandon an overly mechanistic project approach, engaging instead in a continuous process of transformation. Better still, focus on empowering your employees and accept that change takes time. 

2- Disdain for informal networks. Your leaders and managers attach great importance to these networks: Although they don’t appear in the company’s organizational chart, they are of major structural significance. If your project disrupts and reshapes them, it may create resistance. Emphasize everything that will help promote cross-functional roles and functions. 

3- There are better days ahead. Last of all, don’t continually vaunt a better “afterwards” that’s always after the next project – it will only generate fatigue. It’s better to communicate (and above all personify!) the purpose and values of the company. These will help people find their bearings during the transformation. 

To go further

Why transformations fail and what you can do about it

by Matthias Schramm (Forbes, 2 March 2021). 

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Florence Meyer
Published by Florence Meyer
Executive coach, change management expert, and author. Constantly on the lookout for the latest management and leadership trends.