Business Transformation.

In my 25 years of professional career, I have been exposed to many business transformation efforts and methodologies especially with DOW and other multinational corporations.

biz transf

DOW was 1 of the first one to get into the Six Sigma bandwagon under the leadership of Jack Welch with MANDATORY intensive training with huge thick manuals for Green Belt & Black Belt Training using DMAIC. Jack Welch mandated Green Belt certification for promotions at all levels (without exception), this helped in aligning the whole business for transformation and job of Quality leaders became very easy. No other major business leader has taken this kind of stand and hence the role of quality leaders has become very difficult.

The biggest challenge faced by Business Transformation teams is Change Managementand to get the complete buy-in of business leaders and get support for various Initiatives. I faced very similar challenges while implementing the Delivery Excellence framework in IBM GPS.

Based on my learnings I recommend adopt below 3 circles to do change management and drive successful transformation. Most of the models show them overlapping with each other but my experience of huge successful transformation projects is that they are not overlapping. Business financials(biggest circle) drives People(Performance & behavior) which impacts the business core i.e. Processes. The transformation projects should also focus accordingly – First Analyse the Business Financials, Second understand the People issues and then Change the business processes for the desired outcome.


Step 1. Understand Business Financials to Identify Projects

The Biggest Circle is always business financials and all efforts should be aligned towards making them better. The first step towards success is identifying right projects which will excite CEO and CFO and hence financial approvals for projects. Identification process of projects should start with meeting CFO and identifying Revenue Enhancement or Cost Take-out opportunities and reaching agreement on ROI from initiatives.

Step 2. Focus on People and Identify Pain Areas

The next step is to meet lots of employees and do Brainstorming sessions with individuals or groups to identify pain areas, root causes and opportunities to remove hurdles. This process gives you complete insight into how the business process is affecting individual and group performance. This will also provide insight and will help in identifying very specific areas for process improvement.


Step 3. Refine Processes to eliminate waste

Once you have identified the processes which are impacting people performance most and hence impacting business financials the change management becomes very easy. As this process aligns and engages both business leaders and employees and automatically makes them stake-holders in the success of the project.

Driving transformation projects in never easy but the above approach and simple game plan has helped me in achieving > 15 million dollar savings in a couple of years with ROI of 8 times and long lasting automated error proofed processes.


Business Transformation

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