17 October 2012
I was thinking about how our industry has changed, and how our ways of living and working have changed because of communications tools and technology including access-anywhere and social networks. Its not only the communications industry that’s affected by the speed of change and uptake of new digital communication technologies – it is so many other industries as well – press/paper/magazine, security, entertainment, even transport with the growing adoption of virtual meetings instead of travel.
What could our industry learn from others when it comes to high speed transformation?
- Clear executive leadership and commitment must be made, with clear and senior ownership and drive for transformation.
- The case for change must be compelling (this would be the upside of having a burning platform)
- A transformation project must be referenced continuously to the future state of the organization (a clear vision forwards and strong and inspiring communication of the vision)
- Be willing to completely transform your portfolio. IBM went from mainframes to Consulting and Software; Xerox from sandpaper to printers and copy machines.
- Implementation is the riskiest stage of a business transformation project, so it is important to direct attention and energy here and secure continuity in executive ownership and followup.
Here’s a great though somewhat old (yes, 28 months in this line of business is OLD) article on IBM’s transformation, I recommend reading it.
Its not just history we could learn from, by the way. In nature it takes about 10 days for a caterpillar to become a butterfly. In the process the caterpillar has to change radically including physical changes that include digesting part of its own body … gross, yes – but just look at the beautiful result.
Which of the above 5 do you think is the most critical for successful transformation? Or do you have a sixth rule? Welcome to comment below!