Leadership Shortcomings Cause Business Transformation Failures More Than Poor Technology Performance
By: Symphonic Leadership Partners
According to Amy Phillips of Symphonic, business transformation failures often come down to poor goal setting, an incorrect assessment of the role that people play in major change management activities, and a simple inability to adjust to changes in the business landscape after a transformation is launched. All of these factors, of course, can be traced to one common culprit: an inability -- or unwillingness -- to communicate.
"Successful transformations require getting the right people in the room from the start and reaching agreement on what outcome the initiative will generate for the business," says Phillips.
"Beyond opening the lines of communication between key people throughout the organization, it is also important for leadership and the technology executives to establish the key performance indicators (KPIs) and metrics where success or improvement can be demonstrated."
Establishing Strategic KPIs
This last point is key. Goal setting without clear KPIs based on the metrics that really matter to achieving a desired future state is an all too common phenomenon in business transformation planning. The disconnect between the variables that are measured and the results that are sought by business leaders are often the result of stovepipe thinking in which different groups track tactical performance rather than progress toward a strategic objective.
Agreement on the metrics that matter enables business leaders to appropriately prioritize which parts of the business undergo transformation. Without a true understanding of the "new" business objectives that are then communicated in the form of clear priorities from leadership, siloed organizational departments cannot constructively contribute to a transformation initiative.
"Leaders often fail to think through how a transformation initiative will affect employees and customers. Change management is often an afterthought. But employees need to understand why transformation is taking place and how it will alter the way they do their work," Phillips explains. "If business leaders don't bring their employees along...then the end result will be a bad product."
The key is to design, develop and execute a disciplined multidisciplinary leadership framework that brings together key executives to align critical functions through the complicated migration process to the desired future state. The framework has to be strong enough to withstand the pressure and resistance that always accompanies major change, but also flexible enough to adjust to changing realities in the marketplace.
"That is the approach that Symphonic delivers in a series of workshop engagements with organizations that are committed to successful business transformation journeys," says Phillips.
To listen to the entire interview with Symphonic Leadership Partners' Amy Phillips visit:
About Symphonic Leadership Partners
Symphonic Leadership Partners is a multidisciplinary source of results-driven executives who help organizations accelerate the achievement of desired outcomes. Symphonic executives partner with clients -- across industries, geographies and company sizes -- to design, develop and execute business strategies that lead to success. Symphonic Leadership Partners are not advisers who provide opinionated options and walk away. Nor are they staff augmenters who tactically fill roles without contributing strategic value. Symphonic Leadership Partners are integral members of organizations' executive staff, applying a demonstrated track record of success -- and decades of experience -- to rapidly generate strategic gains in a cost-effective manner. To learn more visit: www.symphoniclp.com.