Change is One Thing, But Transformation is the Key
Striving to achieve a future state or implementing an enterprise system is hard work. Expectations are high and careers can be on the line. We have learned to differentiate change from transformation. Change – like new software or new processes – is situational and oftentimes resisted.
Transformation is a new behavior of accepting and adapting to changing situations by allowing yourself and your organization to be nimble and adaptive.
Creating a lasting business process transformation across your organization requires an experienced team of professionals who know how to work with, and instill a sense of hunger in, your people to continuously improve and do whatever it takes to make progress happen.
Ultra’s organizational change management methodology and proven track record of success will guide your team along your transformation expectations. We recognize the people of an organization are the most critical enablers of your project, and without them you cannot be truly transformational.
A Structured Organizational Change Management Plan from Start to Finish
We do not view change management as a phase. Instead, our change management services are woven into the fabric of our methodology, and built into your project plan and team culture throughout every phase. We are continuously aware of change promoters, adopters, influencers, and resistors as they transition from current to the future state.
This constant awareness coupled with proactive activities focused on people, processes, structures, and culture are key to achieving your business strategy and unleashing your business potential.
Our organizational change management activities and distinct methodology phases include:
- Ensuring readiness for change
- Ensuring project alignment
- Developing and managing project communication
- Fostering team engagement and collaboration
- Building organizational trust and accountability
- Crafting organization design
- Managing stakeholder engagement plans
- Assessing the spectrum of change leaders, adopters, followers, and resistors
Organizational Change Management Framework
Ultra promotes the following strategy for driving organizational change. It is flexible and adaptive enough to support any transformation change effort, and enables Ultra to focus your team on navigating through the unique change management and leadership challenges of your dynamic business needs.
Tools, templates, and consultative services are provided in each one of the strategies and are adapted to meet the unique needs of your business and corporate culture. The activities associated with each focus area shown below are aligned to Ultra’s business transformation methodology to ensure the most effective, lasting change impact.
5 Change Management Methodology Focus Areas
The five focus areas that comprise Ultra’s proven approach, are described below.
- Assess and manage opportunity and riskIn this area, key organizational and people-related opportunities and risks are assessed at the outset. A stakeholder analysis is performed that identifies key stakeholders and classifies their current understanding and support of the change initiative.
Plans are built and actions are taken to maximize opportunity, mitigate risk and manage change throughout the project. Also, the readiness of the business unit/location to deploy the new business solution is assessed prior to production launch. Lessons learned are captured and shared following the launch.
- Mobilize and align leadersIn this area, a guiding coalition of leaders with a common vision for change is formulated. An articulated case for change, which is developed during Ultra’s business process improvement phase, is embraced by the leaders. Agreements are built that lead to unified action in the business.
Individually, leaders understand the change and know what to do in terms of adjusted goals, priorities and resources for their area.
- Engage and communicate with stakeholdersIn this area, avenues are provided for understanding, involvement and feedback. A communication plan is developed and deployed that ensures the right information is communicated at the right time. All messages are consistent, timely and clear, with appropriate feedback loops to ensure understanding and broader support across the organization. Events to validate the change initiative, engage stakeholders and provide ongoing awareness are conducted throughout the course of the project.
- Design and develop the future organizationThis area addresses the process of designing an organizational structure that supports the desired future state. Future state processes are constructed based on industry best practices, and adapted to your specific business needs.
Roles and responsibilities are defined and logically grouped, along with appropriate, logical reporting relationships. In addition, current organizational structures and resource competencies are inventoried to understand existing roles and capabilities.
A future state organizational structure with process alignment and enabling technology is systematically deployed in support of the new way of operating in the post-change environment. Lastly, performance management systems for organizations, teams, and individuals are aligned to reinforce and sustain the desired new ways of working.
- Prepare and equip the workforceThis area addresses the impact to people’s jobs and the way they work. New competencies and organizational changes are determined. Managers and leaders are equipped with tools to orient employees and promote learning. Training plans are composed and systematically delivered to promote confidence and capability. Employee action plans are developed to engage at the individual level and provide clarity of expectations.
Critical Success Factors
The five change strategies above provide insight to Ultra’s proven approach for organizational change management, which include a well-articulated business case for change, effective leadership, engaged and aligned workforce, proper training and communications.
While the strategies and their supporting deliverables are well thought through, they are not mutually exclusive and not intended to be applied in a linear or rigid manner. Rather, they should be used as a means of organizing action and promoting thought leadership to meet a project’s expectations and organizational needs. Therefore, certain skill sets emerge as being crucial to project success, including the following five factors:
Artfully using the various change approaches is a key component of leading a change effort of any complex change project. Project leaders of change initiatives will need to demonstrate excellent leadership abilities in guiding and deploying change throughout their respective organizations.
Ultra envisions leadership as being a key success factor for the deployment of any change initiative. Here are some key concepts about leadership:
- Leadership involves mobilizing people to do their adaptive work
- Leadership has two primary components: understanding and action
- Effective leaders find a way to answer the question: “What is really going on?
- Effective leadership involves acting with integrity and with authenticity
- Persons in leadership positions have special leadership responsibilities
- Leadership is not limited to positional leaders, it can and should come from all levels of the organization
- Leadership can and should take many forms, depending on the situation (e.g. team leadership, visionary leadership, political leadership)
- Leadership can be enhanced through coaching and consultation
Developing and delivering a communications strategy with supporting key messages to the various audiences associated with the project is essential to project success.
Training involves conducting a needs assessment, developing a training strategy and supporting plans, and delivering appropriate training in support of these strategies and plans.
The concept of people management has a wide scope. In this situation, we see people management as engaging in the following activities:
- Supporting the organizational and job design/redesign aspects
- Providing expertise on matters of labor management
- Counseling employees regarding career tracks and career development in the post change environment
Organization and Leadership Development
It is important to facilitate the organizational and leadership development needs of the project such as:
- Lead team engagement
- Performing targeted interventions to help build momentum or remove barriers
- Providing leadership and management training and/or coaching
The intent of Ultra’s organizational change management methodology is to link activities and deliverables associated with the change strategy to the appropriate phase of the business change effort.
The project leader and facilitator/consultant of the change initiative have the responsibility of integrating and correctly positioning the change actions and deliverables in the project plan. Ultra brings deliverable templates that are tailored to client needs and project expectations. Together, the client and Ultra team work hand-in-hand to progress the change management objectives and deliverable content, which are confirmed as part of our project management toll gate review process.
The Right Approach to Your Business Transformation
An enterprise initiative is an opportunity for your company to apply the necessary resources to make lasting business change. Traditional enterprise project management activities are not enough to instill a culture change. Effective organizational change management is the necessary component to achieve project success and sustainable change.
Companies turn to Ultra for the right approach, experienced resources, and partnering commitment to ensure their team functions as change agents during the project and for the long term.