What a Giraffe

can teach us about Execution

Going for the low and high hanging fruits, not just quick wins. Moving with a speed of up to 55km/h to keep momentum while overseeing the entire landscape – with a heart rate of up to 200 pulse due its big heart. It is important to keep the overview rather than just reacting to short term developments.

The Giraffe is a great ambassador for sustainable and effective change programs, combining short and mid-term perspective, gaining and keeping momentum – with a big heart for the people who make change happen.

At the end, the secret to leading organizational change is empathy and the ability to create a result oriented organizational culture where accountable teams are focussing on „GETTING THINGS DONE“.

“Genius is in the idea.

Impact, however, comes from action!” Simon Sinek

Any executive who has led a major change program knows that even the most carefully designed programs can fail because of mediocre execution. Executing change has become the central dimension of high performing organisations!

Turning plans into reality isn’t easy and certain companies seem to be better at it than others. Since many years, we work together with leading companies to ensure implementation excellence across sectors and industries, improving performance, capabilities, and practices.

Pragmatic programs vs. procrastination, perfectionism and paralysis by analysis.

Ownership

and Commitment

The greatest impact on a change program’s result comes from ownership and commitment of people. To achieve this commitment, understanding of the context (WHY) and participation (HOW) is key. High performing organisations that excel at execution foster a leadership style that emphasizes on team collaboration, bold aspirations and accountability.

Keeping the high pace of change going requires a significant investment of time and attention from leadership. Great executers create the right buzz around change by engaging the broader organization. Rather than spamming everyone with generic communications, leaders instead cascade a compelling change story through the entire business.

It’s a difficult balance: The core message must be meaningful to as broad a range of the workforce as possible yet also be personal and relevant.

Who killed change?

Root Cause No.1 - Component View

From our experience, organisations struggling to execute plans, often just focus on one or maximum two of the following four components:

PEOPLE, PROCESS, CULTURE and SYSTEMS. 

Shifting the business model towards integrated operations, e.g. introducing an ERP System without ensuring a smooth integration into the working environment and ownership of people through participation in the process, often leads to disappointing results.

Key Questions:

How can new tools and mindset be integrated into the existing workflows? Does the organizational culture support the behavior you seek? If not, what are the key drivers to develop the organizational culture and to design a working environment that not only promotes but demands empowered teams? How do the existing systems promote the new approach? Just focussing on one or two of these components while ignoring the others often leads to short term achievements without long-lasting transformative change.

Our Approach: System View

Preparing your bike for a bike, you wouldn’t just look at the bicycle chain while completely ignoring tires, pedals and brakes, right?

On your organization’s journey, we look together at your organization as an interdependent system and not as individual components.

What exactly do you want to achieve? How can you manage the change so that people are committed? What are the implications on workflows and processes? What tools are required to empower your team? Does the organizational culture need to be adjusted? How? Do your systems foster and enable the new mindset?

This way we avoid a tunnel view on individual components, leading to blind spots in the change program.

Instead, we analyze the interdependencies across the entire system and bring PEOPLE, PROCESS, CULTURE and SYSTEMS in sync.

How does it work?

We combine our field tested program and project management methodologies with expert advice to ensure the successful execution of our clients’ transformation programs and deliver the expected results, in time, budget, and quality.

Analysis

Gain solid understanding of the context by using field-tested factbased system-view tools

Strategy

Prioritize opportunities for improvement and set objectives for transformative change

Design

Develop a change programme which ensures that people, process, culture and systems are in sync and promote the objectives

Roll-out

Execute a change program, applying    agile practices, monitor progress and steer change in close collaboration with stakeholders

Sustain

Evaluate year-overyear progress of performance against KPIs, make adjustments and further develop as necessary