Implementing meaningful, lasting change takes time for any organization. But all too often, leaders rush to evaluate the change they’re trying to make and become discouraged because they don’t see an immediate impact. Although this is understandable from a human nature perspective, it isn’t realistic to think you can change in weeks what took years to create.
Embedding new practices, procedures, and technology takes longer than changing the work hours for employees, but you’re battling your organization’s culture in both cases. That’s why one of the most important things a CEO can do while implementing an organizational transition is to commit to it 100%. There are three levels of support that leaders can take to ensure their team wins:
1. Conduct an organizational assessment with linked strategic recommendations.
An objective organizational assessment can be conducted quickly with an online organizational development tool when coordinated throughout your organization. The benefits derived from an evaluation include the ability to determine perceptions throughout the organization and its stakeholders, and most critically, its customers.
2. Find out the “real climate” of the organization.
Knowing the culture allows leaders to make better-informed strategic and people decisions. To enhance strategic planning efforts, a complete understanding of the organization’s culture is required. While conducting online organizational assessments, we have found that many transitions had failed because the leadership team didn’t consider their organization’s culture. During times of significant change, real courage to face harsh realities is even more important. If you shield yourself from them, you risk ill-informed strategic initiatives that have far less chance of success.
3. Involve at least three levels of management in your assessment.
CEOs with many years of experience will tell you that they are often the last to find out something of fundamental importance. I suffered from this while running my firm in Chicago until I realized I was surrounding myself with my peers and only those closest to me. This was a mistake I corrected after learning that the benefits of taking the time to gather perspectives from everyone in the business far outweighed making speedy decisions.
All organizations go through changes, which is more true today in the current pandemic that is upending so many businesses and organizations. Every single client we have is rethinking their organizational strategies to find the right solution to sustain their business. In today’s challenging business climate, to improve your business implementation takes a mix of cultural understanding, innovation and enhanced strategic planning efforts.