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Why do so many transformation programs struggle?

An old friend once gave me two pieces of great advice about the management of large transformation programs of work. First of all: don’t eat the elephant all at once. Secondly: Don’t give away the farm.  

 

Don’t eat the Elephant all at once

The elephant reference is obvious, i.e. chunk it down, don’t do everything at once, try it out in one area/function and review, rinse and repeat. In the review examine what worked well and what didn’t. Look at culture, governance, technical alignment, benefits realisation and business impacts/processes.   In particular, take into account the capacity of the organisation’s culture to absorb change AND this includes the IT Department, who are a key stakeholder and contributor.

Don’t give away the Farm

The second piece of advice is directed at those organisations that choose a Systems Integrator (SI) and then fail to maintain control. Some of the larger SI’s are very expert at setting up their own political and sales capability inside your business and getting you to pay for the pleasure. Independent program and project management is the key to maintaining control over vendors.

It’s that simple.

David Robinson is Consulting Director at Envisian.  He helps enterprise clients keep their transformation programs on track.


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