A quick change stats blog to get you thinking…..

“Executives say that 96% of their organisations are currently planning for executing business transformation programmes yet only 47% of those same executives expect those transformations to successfully deliver value.” – KPMG Global Transformation Study 2016


That stat is ASTOUNDING to me. Companies are spending millions of pounds and some don’t even believe they will succeed. What isn’t astounding to me is that if execs just understood change better, they could do it better and that later stat would be much higher. So why is it such a struggle?

At the recent Conference Board’s 16th Annual Change and Transformation conference in New York we spent time with loads of different industries from trillion dollar oil companies to Walmart and Calvin Klein. What was clear was that even when companies have large turnovers they are still not recognising the importance of, or investing in proper change resource. It’s not just a UK public sector challenge!

What was clear was the amount of amazing world change that could be created if we did harness the change expertise that was in that conference room. Some of the big companies there were finally getting it. Toyota have successfully moved their disparate American operations into Toyota One, a central office site and community for their employees. The approach was human and the resulting transformation positive and vast. Building on their transformation from a Loom Manufacturer to an Automobile company to a Mobility company.

The American Navy have embraced a change culture that has led to the use of such amazing data insights that it has revolutionised how they manage their fleet and their operations. They acknowledged it has been a slog (theboard and decision makers being the house of representatives with even more control than Secretary of State for Health over NHS) but the rewards have been great.

Key to all the success stories at the conference was people. People make change happen and as we know people are complicated and therefore change is complicated. There are things to make it much easier though.

In the McKinsey Global Survey (2014) they found that organisations that delivered successful transformations were;

5.3X more likely to be successful if leaders role modelled the behaviour changes they were asking employees to make.

3.9X more likely to be successful when managers understand their primary role is to value and develop their teams.

8.0X more likely to be successful when senior management communicates openly across the organisation about the transformations progress and success.

3.8X more likely to succeed when leaders use a consistent change story to align the organisation around the transformations goals.

So, it is exactly those execs that have the power to make the change happen. In the NHS change is so constant that understanding the delivery of change and change practices should be inherent in any public sector leaders knowledge from execs to middle managers and ideally, everyone in the organisations. What are you doing to ensure your leaders can deliver successful change? Helping improve these four things would be a good place to start.


Sarah Boyd – Head of Strategy and Change

With thanks to Gagen Macdonald for sharing the change stats.

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