Tag Archive: company philosophy

The Value of Implementation

August 5th, 2016
change initiative

Successful project implementation requires leadership and hard work to pick up the pieces when something goes wrong – because something always will.

Strategy and plans do not fail in formulation; they fail in implementation.  Time and time again, my clients prove this statement.

Although I am an expert in helping clients select the best ERP system to meet their objectives (and have developed a proprietary process for just this process – ACE), system implementations go awry during implementation. I also happen to be an expert at significant change initiatives in complex organizations (whether merger and acquisitions or culture change) – undoubtedly, they go off the rails during implementation; not formulation.  Thus, it is quite critical to consider the value of implementation.

Because these initiatives are core to success, it is worth thinking about what has the most impact on results. The problem with implementation is that it requires hard work and leadership. There aren’t short cuts on this path to success. For example, when going through a merger, acquisition or selling the business, it is important to think through how you’ll handle issues that arise.  If there is one certainty with these types of projects, it is that issues will arise.  If you haven’t figured out how to address them so that the team aligns with the path forward, damage will be done. Synergies will disappear. Margins will decline. Morale will drop. Customers might hit the road. Thinking through how to handle these scenarios in a way that aligns with “what you said you’ll do” and the company philosophy is important.

If nothing else, consider “thinking before you act” when it comes to implementation. It is easy to slide to the 80% fail rate to meet expectations.  You must be on your toes, proactive and fully understanding the value of implementation for success to consider following you.

 

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What Is Company Culture?

June 1st, 2015
company culture change

Many executives can tell you precisely the company culture they want to have. However, creating that culture becomes increasingly difficult without communications, change agents and action.

I wholeheartedly agree with my consulting mentor Alan Weiss with how he defines culture – “It is that set of beliefs that governs behavior”.

Culture seems like such a mysterious topic and executives spend millions to try to create culture change and the like. Yet when you boil it down to the basics, it is really quite simple. What set of beliefs does your company run by? Where did they come from? Are they helping or hurting you?

When you look at culture with this viewpoint, it becomes easy to determine how to change your corporate culture; however, the devil is in the execution. For example, one of the companies I worked with merged with another. The strategy was “perfect” – great synergies and opportunities to leverage strengths. The vision was communicated effectively but fell apart in execution.  As I’ve heard Alan say about one of his clients, “Bill, do you believe what you read on the walls or what you hear in the halls?”  In this case, the set of beliefs and values that govern the day-to-day behavior were not modified.  Thus, the fabulous strategy could not occur as the former company philosophy prevailed.

Stay tuned for articles about how to change culture; however, to give you a few tips to stew on in the interim:  1) Communicate consistently, frequently and with different media.  2) Align communications with actions.  3) Find exemplars to lead the culture change.  Much of my consulting practice’s success is based upon these principles for the simple reason is that RESULTS FOLLOW.  And you have a happier work environment to boot.

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