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  • Laura Goodrich, GWT Next

Organizational Agility

Hello to all the exceptional Chief Transformation Officers and Transformation Leaders out there! Let's dive into a candid conversation about a topic close to our hearts: transformation.

First, let's ask ourselves: Why is harnessing the power of transformation so critical?

According to Tata Consultancy, "Organizational Agility" isn't just a buzzword. Organizational Agility is the sustained capability to pivot swiftly—strategy, structure, processes, or technology—towards avenues that create value. And yet, for many, this Agility seems just out of reach.

The traditional top-down model of inducing change—where leaders communicate for buy-in and plan to minimize resistance—is, quite frankly, falling short. Employees might nod and go along with it, but there's a stark difference between compliance and genuine commitment.

If we're serious about transformation, we need a shift in mindset. We're not just talking about a company-wide mindset but drilling down to the individual level. Every person in the organization must see a transformation not as a mere directive from the top but as a solution in which they play an integral part. It's about viewing transformation as the answer to today's challenges and the uncertainties of tomorrow.

John Ward from Tata Consultancy hits the nail when he says that our mindset is the bedrock of our performance. It's the unseen force steering our behaviors and defining our actions. So, the million-dollar question becomes: How do we empower individuals to fortify their adaptability, embrace new skills, and excel no matter what the future hurls at them?

Now, don't get me wrong. Communication strategies have their place—they help reinforce transformation priorities, narrate success stories, and navigate the unforeseen. But they're not the silver bullet to instill change.

On a visceral level, people need to understand that in our ever-evolving world, their growth and adaptability aren't just nice-to-haves. They're essential. And here's where it gets tricky: many of our hindrances—the limiting beliefs holding us back—often lurk below our conscious awareness.

From our experience, simply spotlighting these limiting beliefs isn't enough to dispel them. So, what's the remedy? Storytelling.

Through storytelling, leaders and employees can witness and dissect their limiting beliefs or behaviors. Take, for instance, our virtual "Creating a Mindset for Change" program. We narrated a tale highlighting the peril of centering our thoughts on our fears. The aftermath? An employee had a profound realization about his misconstrued perception of leadership—a realization that didn't just change his mindset but has since served as a beacon for others on their transformation journeys.

So here's the crux: Change isn't an isolated event but a journey. That's why we spread our transformation programs thoughtfully, weaving narratives, posing reflective queries, fostering dialogues, and taking tangible actions. Each component stitches together to bring about genuine, observable change at an individual level. And every success story, every breakthrough moment, is a testament to the domino effect of positive transformation.

In conclusion, to all the transformation leaders reading this: remember, the power to shape the future lies in harnessing the collective strength and adaptability of every individual in our organizations. Let's guide, inspire, and walk alongside them on this transformative journey.

Paving the Path Forward: Action Questions from GWT Next

  1. Reflection on Personal Limiting Beliefs: As a transformational leader, what limiting beliefs or hindrances have you personally identified and overcome, and how has this impacted your approach toward leading organizational change?

  2. Individual Emphasis in Transformation Strategy: Given the importance of individual-level mindset shifts in successful transformations, how are you ensuring that every member of your organization feels valued, engaged, and integral to the transformation process?

  3. Storytelling as a Tool: How have you incorporated storytelling into your transformation initiatives, and what impact has it had on employee understanding, engagement, and commitment to change?

Laura Goodrich

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