For anyone who has led an organizational change, we know it can be complicated at best and at worst; it can limit your career and have a significant adverse impact on your business. In 2008, a McKinsey survey of 3,199 executives around the world found, as Kotter did in 1998, that only one transformation in three succeeds. Other studies over the past ten years reveal remarkably similar results.
So, in times of profound change, where business success hinges on the leader and the organization being able to change quickly and effectively, what should we be doing to increase our likelihood of success?
I focus on the impact of leadership as well as the systems and processes being used to implement the change. From Collins Good to Great and others we have learned that Level 5 Leaders are more likely to successfully create long term sustainable change that moves the company to “greatness.”
So, while there is certainly no one size fits all answer, there are six basic principles a leader embarking on change can consider.