By Sonia Clayton.
I recently read a joke about how the Corona (crown) Virus was just becoming a simple “virus” in Venezuela because its crown was stolen as soon as it got there! Funny or not, COVID-19 has become an agent of change and of the most transcendental moments in history. CHANGE has permeated the world and innovation is driving transformation. Innovation and Technology have sustained our jobs and education programs during this crisis and somehow, we are surviving the largest work & learn-from-home experiment in the world.
Suddenly, entire organizations have encountered a new norm that requires open management models, communication sharing on technology platforms and personal trust. This new norm is obliterating traditional silo models of operation impacting employees, culture and customers while transforming our value-added propositions. Many of these significant and fundamental changes will become permanent. There is no doubt that when this health crisis is over, we will be transformed and with a new attitude towards technology, learning, and work-life.
Here is a plan you can follow to not be left behind during this moment of change.
Accept the Change
COVID-19 has ripped off the Band-Aid and the world as we know it is transforming. All has come together as a package with the struggles of ACCEPTANCE, IMPLEMENTATION and ADOPTION. Disruption has forced us to think outside the box. We are in design-thinking mode. Many lessons are being learned and the way we work, learn and conduct business will change for the best.
One Step at A Time
Barton and Crows in Harvard Business review say: “Introducing technological change into an organization presents a different set of challenges to management than does the work of competent project administration.” This means the norms are changing. Technology upgrades are needed, and they are important. As you embrace digital transformations one-step-at-a-time, you will learn that we have no start and end timelines anymore. Since technology advances so quickly, Agile Methodologies are moving swiftly in “sprinting” fashion, allowing for continuous improvement via the implementation of major technologies. This means that your digital tools are in constant upgrade with overlapping timelines.
Trust More and Manage Less
As you embark on a digital transformation and a new technological journey, you will feel like much is out of control. You will be living and breathing innovation and adapting to new technology platforms and new operating models.
As new remote work models set in, learn to trust more and manage less. If you hire smart, reliable and capable employees, you will not need to micromanage them. You need to empower and enable them to do the work.
Visible leadership is key during transformations but your success as a leader depends on your results. Identify relevant standards, select indicators, set goals and targets and clearly communicate expectations. Put in place performance measures, refine indicators, define measures and develop a data collection method and system. Base your decisions on data and reports. Develop a regular reporting cycle and keep and eye on quality improvement.
Driving excellence is important. Use data for decision making and policy improvements. Manage change and most important, create a learning organization to drive knowledge transfer and performance improvement.
Richard Branson said: “Have a passion for what you do; believe in yourself, your product and your customer; persevere; delegate; listen. Have fun.” I endorse Branson’s words. You can create a winning environment during this time of transformation. Do the best you can to the best of your ability, believing that you will achieve your goal.
At this moment in time, we all have lost our own crown. This is now a hands-on world. This change will bring trials, fearful pressures, growing pains and the fiery baptisms of technology transformation. Let us all embrace the change today for a better tomorrow.