Nine Steps to Achieving Transformational Change

By Karen A. Frenkel  |  Posted 06-19-2014 Email Print this article Print

A new study on transformational change in organizations outlines best practices that engage employees, provide a vision of the future and improve work processes. "Transformational Change—Making It Last" highlights what leading companies do to revolutionalize the way their employees work. The APQC study distinguishes between transformational change, which focuses on changing how people think and behave, and merely transitioning from one system to another with mechanical steps. The study was conducted by APQC with Grant Thornton, LLC, and features insights and case studies from Baker Hughes, Booz Allen Hamilton, Underwriters Laboratories, and Optum Technology Group of United Health Group. "To transform how work gets done, we must understand how work gets done in the flow of daily activities," the report notes, "and design our change activities to create an environment that not only encourages adoption but also evaluates compliance and makes adjustments if things don't work as planned." Enterprises that successfully implement and sustain transformational changes have a competitive advantage, according to the report, but they face challenges, which the study addresses. To purchase a copy of the report, click here.

  • Drive Change From Within

    Having the impetus for change is not enough. Management should drive transformational change within enterprise and be accountable for it.
    Drive Change From Within
  • Communication Is Key

    From the beginning of your effort, leverage top-down communications to achieve transformational change.
    Communication Is Key
  • A Road Map Is Not Enough

    Use a holistic framework that lets you tailor your tactics and solutions to the people, processes, tools and infrastructure of transformational change.
    A Road Map Is Not Enough
  • Be Centralized and Decentralized

    To manage transformational change, use a centralized team with project and change management skills. Then enlist the business unit teams to implement that change.
    Be Centralized and Decentralized
  • How to Create Buy-In

    To overcome barriers to change: Launch a test project to establish the need for change and the efficacy of the process and team. Enlist people who already believe in the project to communicate its value and to create momentum. Outline the need for change from a business or ROI perspective.
    How to Create Buy-In
  • Establish Reviews and Measures

    Use incremental reviews and measures to facilitate timely problem-solving. Begin with the goal in mind and then identify measures that will indicate success along the way.
    Establish Reviews and Measures
  • Use Improvement Programs

    To reinforce change, provide ongoing training to encourage a new culture, behaviors and necessary skills. Incorporate these into employee evaluations and rewards.
    Use Improvement Programs
  • Continuity a Plus

    You should use continuous improvement programs to monitor and refine the transformational change so that it will endure.
    Continuity a Plus
  • How to Bridge Business Silos

    To connect silos and overcome a lack of integration: Outline a single view of the transformation's goals in a one-page document. Focus on the value streams rather than the functions. Use cross-functional training programs between the business, process and quality management teams.
    How to Bridge Business Silos
Karen A. Frenkel writes about technology and innovation and lives in New York City.


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