For any organisation, irrespective of in what sector you operate or who your target markets are, change is an inevitable part of the business process. At no time, has this been more pertinent than now, where digital technologies are increasingly changing the way businesses operate.
In 2012, global consulting firm Deloitte released their report on digital disruption which found that 65% of Australian firms will experience between 15 – 45% disruption to their business as a result of digital technologies. The variation depends on the nature of the business and the industry. So change is coming, or indeed is already here. But as our last post described, the key to dealing with inevitable change is not just to manage or embrace it, but to use the forces of change to create amazing change. –the change you want. So how is this possible? While the process is slightly more complicated for businesses and needs to be adapted to individual business objectives and cultures, the principles are more or less the same.Here’s some guidelines to help.
- Define and establish what change needs to occur. Don’t initiate change for changes sake, but undertake an audit of areas of your business where changes need to occur. Seek input and feedback from staff – at all levels, not just your senior managers, and also other stakeholders such as customers, suppliers, and even seek advice from industry bodies and professional associations.
- Plan. Once you have established what changes need to occur, prepare a plan for implementing the changes. Include timelines budgets and conduct analyses of potential impacts of implementing the changes, gather information.
- Invest. This refers not just to your financial investment but also commit human resources( both existing and new) , invest in technology as appropriate and if need get in third party expertise to help manage the process and guide change in those areas where it has the most impact.
- Involve and inform. Ensure your staff are an integral part of the change management process. Inform them before and provide feedback throughout and the change process. Ensure all your stakeholders are informed and involved in the process as required.
- Review. Assess not only the change process itself, but also monitor what additional changes may be required in the short and long term.
Creating change in business can be a daunting task and the stakes can be high , but not creating change can leave you floundering behind your competition and constraining your potential growth.