The role of leaders in implementing effective change

09 Jun 2023


Working with one of our clients recently, in the early stages of implementing an Integrated Tactical Planning (ITP) process, it was great to see them calling out the value of the lead team, recognizing and celebrating the team members who are using the new process and "doing the right thing". Whilst a key element of the change journey, for the leadership team, this is the easy part.

The harder and more impactful contribution business leaders can make to this implementation will be modelling the behaviours they are looking for from their teams.

Discussing this critical success factor and keeping it visible for business leaders will help them set the example that will then “make it OK” for their teams to change their behaviour and use their ITP process to think “best for company” rather than "best for my function" or "best for me".

As leaders we are tasked with leading change. Often the problem starts with us. In our work assisting thousands of businesses around the world transform their business processes and performance, we have found that the single biggest success factor is executive leadership. This doesn’t just mean the leadership team providing the resources and telling everyone else to get on with it but instead requires the leaders to understand and play their role in the process.

The key phrase above is "play their role". Our people don’t generally do what we tell them to do unless our actions are aligned with what we say. Leaders modelling the required behaviours are key for effective change.

A final thought - if culture eats strategy for breakfast, as many posts that I have seen over the years on LinkedIn have stated, then modelling behaviour is a must, as what we do, not what we say, establishes organisational culture.

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