Changing the Way Change is Done

In Syngineering, we show you how to apply the Gestalt cycle of experience to build agility into any organization. In Sense, you look for misalignments between your strategy, your internal culture, your external business environment and your organization's performance. In Mobilize, if there is a misalignment, you initiate your change effort and begin to explore further what is needed. In Frame, you agree on the desired operating model. In Customize, you work out the details of your operating model at a work group level and deploy it. In Sustain, you embed the changes, recognize successes, and return to Sense.

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Identify and engage your sponsors and champions of the change effort. Bring together a diverse set of stakeholders to create a shared view of the current reality. Scan for changes in the external business environment and in the internal organizational culture. Assess the organization’s performance, strategy, and culture. Decide what organizational culture do you need to address the environment you are in and to achieve your strategy? Find data to support and challenge your views. What questions still need to be answered? Surface tensions and opportunities between where you are and where you want to be. Decide are these compelling enough to commit resources to act now?

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If so, identify resources to take a deeper dive into both the current state and into your desired future state. Refine the strategy. Diagnose what else needs to change along with the criteria to be used for making key design decisions. Conduct design thinking workshops to better understand what’s needed and what’s possible. Identify personas and understand their pain points. Look at how people and technology can create a better future for them. What is your organization’s role in all of this? Are you looking wide enough for the solutions? Who else could you involve in this process?

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Involve others to outline the organization’s core work. Fashion an operating model around the core work. Consider what design options do you have that fit your desired outcomes? Assess each option against your agreed set of design criteria to determine the way forward. This is an iterative approach to design so consider what is the minimum that you need to test your hypothesis and to start to deliver value? How will you collect feedback early and often? What is still missing? Who else needs to be involved? 

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Further develop the details of your operating model and deploy it for each work group, including defining the minimum job requirements and role descriptions that you need if it is a structural change. Look at key processes, relationships and technology to enable new ways of working. Consider systemic levers and impacts as they relate to your components (link to the components page here) and desired culture. Identify and deploy your changes in the organization within the shortest time frame possible to deliver value. Gather input and further refine your solutions as you go. Continuously sense, respond and adapt. Help others to do the same. Make trade-offs based on priorities, capabilities, and capacity.

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Embed the changes through high engagement, learning and coaching. Show people what it means to operate in the aspired new culture and how to make that shift in a meaningful way. Help them to understand the importance of their role and how it relates to others inside and outside of the organization. Celebrate successes. Acknowledge people’s contributions. Provide opportunities for further growth and collaboration. Build in continuous feedback and learning loops. Focus on value delivery. Sustain completes the cycle, ensures tensions are addressed, and returns the organization back to continuous sensing. Design thinking, which seeks meaningful and sustainable solutions, is a key feature throughout the cycle but especially in this stage. Where there is continuous sensing, solutions need not be perfect, just good enough to address the immediate issues.