Becoming a Digital Leader - 5 Tips for Managing Organisational Change

Successful organisational change requires a shift from “the way we’ve always done things”. Here are five tips for managing organisational change in business.


Mark Pinkerton

How do you manage organisational change in business & how do you know when to start working on it?

image of Scottish loch seen through camera lens
image of Scottish loch seen through camera lens

5 Tips for Organisational Change Management

How do you manage organisational change in business & how do you know when to start working on it? We’ve attempted to answer this question using the Prospero Digital Maturity Curve.

The Prospero Digital Maturity Curve defines five stages along the journey towards digital maturity: Digital beginners > Digital Siloed > Digital Aspirations > Digital Organisation > Digital Leaders.

The five stages help brands recognize where they are, where they’re going, and what to expect along the journey. A key piece of this framework is the Inflection Point—the point at which profound organisational change must occur. The inflection point happens at different points for different brands. But once it does, there’s no going back. If you want to achieve digital maturity, you can’t continue to do things how you’ve always done. Despite being key to successful organisational change, the Inflection Point is often missed or overlooked. And even when it’s not, most companies aren’t sure how to move forward with impactful change.

1. Start with the right mindset

Understand that impactful and lasting progress is a holistic process involving changes among people, processes, systems, and technologies. You can’t expect to reach the peak of digital maturity by focusing on only one aspect of the business. This mindset needs to start with leadership understanding that all departments and all business verticals will be affected, and planning accordingly.

2. Stress the benefits

We’ve all heard about the importance of getting buy-in from stakeholders, and it’s certainly no different with organisational change management. Change is hard—but if people can see why a shift needs to happen, as well as the positive effects of it, they’ll be more willing to take on the challenges.

Some of the most common benefits of digital transformation include increased productivity, efficiency, innovation, and profitability.

3. Create a roadmap

Change is less scary when you can see the road ahead. Use the Prospero Digital Maturity Curve to help employees understand where the organisation is, where it's been, and where it's going. And augment the “where we’re going” aspect with a strategic vision for the future and specific initiatives to support that vision.

To be effective, a vision must be imaginable, desirable, feasible, focused, flexible and communicable, says Harvard Business School professor John Kotter.

4. Empower action by removing obstacles

Once your teams are on board and you have a change management plan supported by a specific, company-wide vision, it’s time for action. To support and empower action, change management leaders need to continually spot and remove barriers to action, for example:

● Provide training to combat any lack of needed skills

● Recognize and break down silos of information

● Be as transparent as possible about both challenges and wins

● Invite participation from all levels of the organisation

5. Be persistent and consistent

Don’t expect change to happen overnight. On the contrary, the change management process in business is ongoing, as people need time to develop new habits and adopt new ways of thinking.

Becoming a digital leader is not a sudden shift; rather it’s the product of consistent, gradual evolution over time. It requires resilience, curiosity, iteration, and being prepared to fail a few times before you succeed.

For more detail about the Prospero Digital Maturity Curve and the Inflection Point, see here.

Is your business stalled on the road to organisational change?

We’ve helped numerous eCommerce brands and digital retailers to achieve successful business change management. Let’s chat.

Other Relevant links: 

Read our thoughts on Digital maturity - here

Take a look at our Season 2 podcast series - here

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Take a look at our Reports and Whitepapers - here