Michael Vaz, Vice President Learning & Development, Accor Asia Pacific
Let's go on a Transformation! We need a culture! Culture eats strategy for breakfast, lunch, dinner and everything in between! If you've heard these comments around your workplace, or have been on the receiving end of these comments from your boss, this post is for you! Having been on a few of these journeys and currently in the midst of one of the largest one's we've ever done with a company I truly love, thought i'd share a few little tips on what's worked , what's not and what's going to ROCK your transformation journey! Hope this helps!
#1 Make Passion Your Rocket Fuel
Literally , go NO further if someone says the word Transformation in the most boring tone of voice you've ever heard! Stop & Check what they think the word means. I'm dead serious as I type this, do NOT go any further. If passion isn't the driving force, the rocket fuel that powers the journey, this baby aint going nowhere. It's going to feel like work... hard work. And no matter what the so called experts might tell you, that's NOT how a transformation journey works. See , when companies decide they want to go on a transformation, it's usually because they've heard about what other companies have done and how it's worked for them. Passion needs to be on overdrive, make sure of this even if you decide to partner with someone to get it done. If the consultant or partner you pick doesn't have you out of your seats with excitement or super pumped about the journey, they're not right for a transformation. See this rocket fuel I'm talking about doesn't come with everyone, It needs to be sparked ! And that only happens when you...
#2 Find People with Even More Passion
Every Transformation needs People at every level that not only give you the expertise , but bring in even more passion. FIND THEM! Every organisation has them, yes, even yours. How do you spot them? They're the one's you meet in the hallway that are just turned on by life! They're shining lights that cannot stop smiling, that radiate positivity and bring that touch of magic into a meeting room. They're special, they make others around them positively glow just from being in their presence. If you don't have them, don't go on a transformation.
Every Transformation needs People at every level that not only give you the expertise , but bring in even more passion.
I won't sugar coat it for you... you'll fail... every time! Transformation needs people that can't stop being who they are, they bring the rocket fuel for the journey. (And calling them rockstars or giving some rockstar title might not be so bad either ;-) )#powerinwords), and speaking of powered...
#3 Be Sure it's Powered by Great Leadership
Make sure the transformation journey (and it is a journey.. sometime's one that last's 2-3 years) isn't just a fad, a stop gap piece. There's a LOT of promises that accompany a transformation, promises to treat your people better, promises of change, promises of hope for a better future within the company. Your first step... get your CEO involved, your COO's , your Chief HRO, everyone on the board. The second you do, you know you're on the right track. I've been exposed to both kinds, and I can honestly tell you, it won't work if your leaders don't power it up! Great Leadership always accompanies a great transformation. We've truly been blessed to have every single title I mentioned previously, not only back it up, but talk about it every time they take to the stage, in every meeting, every time they make decisions. See great leaders have the power to change lives, each time they speak, each time they stand up and do the right thing... Great Leaders can transform a company. A transformation journey just doesn't happen without them!
#4 Results in the Research, Power In the Play
Stats are everywhere , research shows that companies with a definitive culture have massive upward trends in the stock market, companies that can engage employees perform better at every level, fact! The journey isn't about the results though. it's about the journey.. the journey that get's you there. Most transformations if not all of them are about changing a company culture. What's a culture? It's just waking up every day and thinking, acting , behaving a certain way! So take this bit crazy seriously! (I'm not even going to check the grammar on that sentence). If it's about finding your why, going back to the companies purpose for existence, re-defining your company's reason for existence (all valid, and all for another article) , it doesn't matter. What matters is HOW you articulate it. It's got to be done with with the people, from the people, by the people. See, you can't dream up a WHY in the back of a boardoom with 15 people. So get out there and do the research , ask people to articulate it , define it, and then spread the word at every level. Make the Transformation an energy centre piece. At every event, function, speak about it with the rocket fuel we talked about earlier.
#5 Calling It thee Right Thing is Everything
Get it together, give it a name, parent it with passionate people and then stand back and watch it grow..... Words are powerful and extremely potent! So feed the transformation journey with the right stuff, the right promises, the right recognition, the right way to treat people, do the right thing at the right time everytime and you'll get there. It's not a once time thing. It's a culture, it's doing these things again and again, staying true in the moment of choice, and watching it come to life in your company. Have a awesome time with your transformation and may your journey be truly special.