Working Together

As the true ramifications of Brexit start to be exposed, Theresa May asked that politicians work together so that Britain may obtain the best deal.

Surprise, surprise, of course the opposition parties refused to do so and instead continued to snipe at the Government proving that far from an attitude of “well that is what the people want so let us get on with it,” we the poor British public are left with feuding which will mean that instead of concentrating on getting the best deal the Government will also have to fend off attempts to undermine negotiations.

Image Licensed to i-Images Picture Agency. Picture by Andrew Parsons.

Now where have we seen that sort of thing before, one wonders?

The fact is that when new systems are introduced to businesses, far too often instead of working as a team to ensure that the introduction is successful, less enlightened managers will be prone to provide negative criticism.

Thus the starting point is often to find a champion(s) to support the changes. That is all very well, but those champions will find that unless their responsibilities are adjusted so that they can spend full time on the implementation their “day” jobs will be adversely affected.

This amounts to a double whammy for the snipers, the critics and unenlightened as not only can they carp about the new system(s) but also they can point to the deterioration in the performance of the champion(s) as far as their “day” jobs are concerned.

So when managing change, such as the introduction of new systems or processes, how does one avoid these problems?

From VALE’s vast experience in implementing over 125 systems and integrating to further systems in over 170 cases there are a number of steps that can be taken to ensure success. Some may seem hard work at the time but hard preparation work will more than pay off over time.

Here are some of the key ones:-

  • Involve all the key departmental managers whose departments will be affected by the changes in system and processes that accompany them and ask them to list the things that the current system/processes do not do that would be beneficial to their departments if they could be achieved with a new system and changes in processes.
  • Do the groundwork with the supplier of the proposed system to check how many of these desired state facilities can be achieved by implementing their system.
  • Ensure at least an 80% fit for the new system out of the box and obtain quotes for the bespoke work that would take that percentage nearer 100%.
  • Run workshops for each of the departments concerned and ensure that key managers attend to sign off the suitability of the proposed system and process changes and to define bespoke requirements.
  • Then run workshops for key users to help them to be positive about the new system and processes.
  • From the workshops make a list of areas that the managers and/or users found of concern and obtain commitments from the proposed supplier to tackle these.
  • Finally incorporate as many of the matters raised by managers and users as part of the contract to supply and as part of the implementation plan.

Taking these steps will go a long way to ensuring that neither you nor any champions get hung out to dry by people playing politics during the implementation.

Sadly we cannot rely on our Politicians to do anything but play at politics instead of taking responsibility for ensuring positive progress by working together for once.

There were some things to be said about the way that the Second World War forced politicians to work together for the common good not that one would ever want such an awful event to occur to promote such co-operation.

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