A New Way To Think About Organizational Change

a cartoon man lies on his front lawn with the caption, "He tried to hold back the blades of change."

We all resist change to a certain degree. That’s because it is unfamiliar, the results are uncertain, and it takes extra effort. The more massive the change, the more difficult it is to effect…in our personal as well as our professional lives. That is why there is a new way to think about organizational change—as a continuous series of small improvements rather than a radical, swift organizational transformation.

Change need not be catastrophic. In fact, huge change can be counterproductive and does not jibe with what we now know about human behavior. Organizations would be wise to consider how habits are truly broken and how behavior is effectively changed for the long-term.

The slower process should be well-known to anyone who has tried to break a bad habit or improve their health. Behavioral experts advise setting small goals…tackle little incremental improvements, one at a time.

Consider the Weight Watchers diet program. It ranked #1 in Best Weight-Loss Diets by U.S. News in 2016. Based on solid nutrition, Weight Watchers does not promise rapid loss. Instead, their plan promises steady weight loss over time. Their dieters develop healthier eating habits for long-term success. The food plan guides program participants step-by-step on a regime that is satisfying, energizing and nutritious. They do not provide a list of taboos. In fact you can eat whatever you want as long as you adhere to the daily “points” target. It works. Sure, you might be able to lose weight faster on a fad diet but how long will it stay off and what did you learn about maintaining better health and don’t you still crave the forbidden treats?

If you apply the same principles to organizational change, it would look something like this:

  1. Envision the overall goal
    Let’s say your business strategy relies in large part upon delighting your customers. Your visual goal, then, is a stream of happy, loyal customers who value your outstanding service so much that they are immune to attempts by the competition to steal them away.
  2. Outline the steps that will get you there
    You will probably have a plan that includes a review of the systems and procedures that reward good customer service and a re-training of your service staff in the customer service soft skills so they know how to understand customer needs, communicate in a positive and helpful manner, and see that customers are well satisfied with the results. In effect, you will be changing the organizational culture to focus on the customer in a way that works for your unique situation.
  3. Break the steps down into smaller improvements
    Perhaps you can begin by teaching your reps how to greet customers in a friendly, sincere manner as if they are the first call received. Encourage your customer service reps when they shift from their standard, indifferent greeting to a more personal, helpful one. Most customers will respond in a favorable way. Reps will notice the difference and make the cheerful “hello” part of their regular behavior.

Then you might train them in how to listen for the underlying problem and ask discovery questions that show real interest in finding a solution. A third improvement might be in their “close”…checking to see that the problem was solved to the customer’s satisfaction. Bit by bit, your reps will link the experience of their behavior changes to a real sense of satisfaction with each customer interaction. Their new manners will, over time, become a habit.

The key is to make even the big overall changes easier to effect by making small organizational changes over time.

Benchmark your organizational change effort now.

Share:
Facebook Twitter Google+ Email LinkedIn
Files under:  

Comments are closed.

Here’s a token of my appreciation for ALL your efforts. I’m offering my most sincere appreciation, and it extends to all the folks who made our customized management development programs possible.

Susan Anderson
Workforce Planning Bureau

What a refreshing change from the half-baked psycho-babble you normally get from training and consulting organizations. LSA gives you the practical and results-oriented assistance you need to define and reach your goal.  They provide a results driven plan – not just a temporary fix. They are great to work with, and even more importantly, they “get it!”

David Fiano
Vice President Human Resources

The Managing Virtual Teams program was extremely valuable. Your consultant/ facilitator’s fundamental knowledge of Synopsys as a company provided an incredible base to build upon while tackling the complications of managing and working with globally distributed teams. My team walked away walked away with highly useful practices and tools. It was an excellent use of our time.

Debra Martucci
Vice President, Information Technology

I had been working with LSA for many years with my prior company. Currently, I’m with a company who hadn’t done much basic management skills training. After identifying and presenting a program recently, our managers are excited and talking in the halls about the great experience. LSA saves us time in delivering the right training for our needs.

Phyllis Moracco
HR Director

LSA helped us design and deliver a blended learning solution for our leaders to help drive our growth plans in a way that aligned with our specific culture and values. LSA understood our business, had deep expertise in the content areas, tailored the programs to fit our specific needs, and delivered great results. They constantly strive to deliver business impact and align their solutions with our business initiates, culture, and performance management systems. I highly recommend them to anyone looking to take their leaders to the next level.”

Beth A. Taylor
Vice President of Human Resources

Thoratec

Over the years, both at 3Com and now at Redback, I’ve found LSA Global to be a valuable resource. The recent compliance program that they delivered for Redback’s executive and management team was the right solution, of the highest of quality, and customized to our business and culture. I would highly recommend LSA to any company looking for top quality solutions.

Gina Fulton
Vice President of Human Resources

We have been able to utilize LSA’s extensive network of top-notch resources to leverage our investment in employee development. The result has been the cost effective and highly efficient delivery of quality educational and management training programs.

Steve Feller
Vice President, Human Resources

Our company engaged LSA to do a specialized “train the trainer” program, and the consultant’s performance outdid our exceptionally high standards for such a program. Very crucial to the success of this program was the work done upfront to discuss our needs and to interview key members of our organization so that the program specifically met our goals. Our facilitators continue to comment on the success of the program. Thanks also for the follow-up.

Frank Abbott
Chief Financial Officer

What a personal and professional pleasure it has been to Partner with LSA. They are truly a strategic partner with Wyse. For more than 5 years, LSA has been engaged in delivering various training and development solutions for Wyse, from custom on-site programs targeting specific core competencies, to working individually with clients to build job skills, and offering invaluable services to me and my team as we continue to build our learning programs. LSA’s representatives do more than sell a product, they offer a full service solution: they understand our business, our strategic initiatives, and the needs of our customers.

Jeff Rangel
Director of HR

LSA’s Employee Engagement Consulting and Survey work has provided critical visibility into: how well our people are holding up under the general economic environment, as well as, the specific challenges that face biotechnology companies in their efforts to discover and develop new medicines; their level of alignment and commitment to XOMA’s Vision and mission critical strategies; how leadership practices and management systems support an environment that engender commitment, and the specific actions that our leaders can take to improve on areas that are important to our people. I highly recommend LSA’s employee engagement solutions.

Chris Wells
Vice President, HR and IT

Harmonic has worked with LSA for over 8 years. We have found their partnership extremely beneficial. We recently implemented a Management Development Program that was designed and customized to support our company’s strategic initiative of hiring, building, and retaining key intellectual property and human talent. We worked closely with LSA to target and implement the right solutions with the greatest impact. I would recommend LSA to any company that’s looking for a trusted training and development partner.

Janice Passarello
Director of Human Resources

PalmSource has found our relationship with LSA extremely beneficial. We worked closely with LSA to customize the right Management Training Program solution to meet our unique business needs. LSA is a quality organization, one that I’d recommend to any company looking for a first class training and consulting partner.

Ken Boehm
Vice President of Human Resources

We have worked with LSA Global for our learning and development needs and have always had great success. They helped us recently with customized Management Workshops that we held for the second time. It was fantastic, and I would highly recommend LSA to anyone that is attempting to get immediate and impactful improvements.

Mary Johnston
HR Manager, BU Radiology Informatics

I highly recommend LSA Global to anyone who is looking to improve individual or organizational effectiveness through their top quality programs and broad range of expertise.

Greg Pappas
VP of Human Resources

LSA’s customized Effective Presentation Skills program has helped me elevate my presentation skills to the next level. I now have a much greater self-awareness of my presentation skills and can leverage off of my strengths while working to improve upon other areas. I would definitely recommend this solution to anyone for whom business presentations are an integral part of their job.

Jim Elliott
Senior Marketing Manager

Samsung

Evaluate your Performance

Toolkits

Toolkits

Download key published insights and tools from industry experts highlighting best practices in the areas of talent, strategy and culture.

More

Health Checks

Health Checks

Want to know how you stack up against leading organizations?  Receive a complimentary benchmarking analysis courtesy of an LSA Expert.

More

Whitepapers

Whitepapers

Get up to speed on timely solutions critical to your business. Published by LSA Experts based upon client feedback and key industry trends.

More

Methodology

Methodologies

First we identify the key metrics you want to improve. Then we assemble a dedicated team of elite experts who have successfully solved similar problems with similar clients.

More

Blogs

Stay up to do date with the latest information on how we help high growth companies align their culture and talent with strategy.

More

Case Studies

Client Case Studies

Real world consulting and training approaches from LSA projects, providing insights on how your company can outperform the competition.

More