Despite the best efforts of hundreds of the world’s top managers and consultants, creating an effective, repeatable roadmap for navigating major organizational change has been elusive. There have been successes, but they appear driven by the individual, intangible genius of a few business superstars. These leaders not only drive change, but also successfully manage the process of change to solve problems of physical infrastructure, strategic planning, and the riddle of how to adapt and optimize the human capital of their organizations. What do these leaders use to produce results and how can their successes be translated and taught to others? The answer lies in understanding the part of individual, team, and organizational behavior that remains a constant before, during, and after the change process. The answer is instinct.
For years, change management was an issue only for outside consultants. Leaders within organizations relied on the “perspective” of outsiders to identify issues and deliver unpleasant news, such as reductions in force or wholesale changes in the strategic plan only recently adopted and funded. While the tactics, or even the strategy, presented by outsiders often made sense, the implementation usually fell short. Reliance on this approach alone has proven to be an ineffective solution for companies facing change.