Big Bang reorganizations don’t work. They are lengthy, ineffective and hard.
Organizations reorganize all too often. This resets the culture changes of agile transformations. They are also expensive, and it is hard to attract and retain talent when they get tired of yet another reorganization. By Paul Takken Engineering the future of technology and organizations
There is a better way: incremental reorganization. It’s like incremental Product Development for your organization.
Re-organizations are costly.
Reorganizations are a setback of your culture change. Almost every agile transformation we’ve done so far, started and ended with another classic reorganization. We spent countless hours building a culture of continuous improvement in the workplace, with teams and management. By the time this started to take off, there was the announcement of another reorganization. At best, this put a temporary freeze on the improvements we were doing, but more often resulted in a complete reset of the culture we invested in so much to build. Almost overnight, people reverted to their primal instincts, showing a fight-or-flight response. People get demotivated and performance drops.
Reorganizations also mean that talent is hard to attract and retain. So many corporate organizations are wondering why it is so difficult to attract and retain good talent. Yet very few of them acknowledge that these types of reorganizations are one of the reasons.
There is a lot of money in the reorganization business. In fact, there are a lot of large and very successful management consulting companies that make a lot of money managing and executing “periodic” reorganizations.
Stop doing reorganizations, but “re-organize” continuously. The world around is still changing every day, companies are disrupted in almost every industry (and if not, they worry about being disrupted – and rightfully so). Companies still need to adapt to these changes.
Product Development is already done this way, why not apply this to your organization as well? Good Product Managers realize it’s simply not enough to completely design a new product upfront and release it to the market after a long period of development. These Big-Bang releases have made way for incremental product development, where establishing a continuous feedback loop with your customer is key to success. We can also apply these principles to the development and reshaping of organizations. In fact there are successful organizations that are already doing this (State of Washington).
Where to start?
Roel Trienekens and Paul Takken are enabling organizations to become future-fit, using lean, agile and next-level practices.
In our next blog post we will explain the 10 steps that will liberate you from lengthy, ineffective and hard reorganizations by kickstarting continued evolution in your organization.