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Change Management: Overcoming Transformation Roadblocks

Mastering Change Management: Overcoming Roadblocks in Organizational Transformation


Navigating the complexities of change management within organizations requires more than just strategic planning; it demands a deep understanding of the human resistance to change. At Pintail Solutions, we delve into the critical moments that define successful transformations and share insights on how to effectively lead your team through the uncertainty of change. Discover the key to unlocking potential and driving forward momentum in our latest blog post, featuring expert advice and real-world experiences.

Video Transcript

Narrated by Jason C. Bork, President of Pintail Solutions

You talk about change, there's a lot to discuss. Your elevator pitch, key stakeholders, building guiding coalitions, all that critically important in driving change within an organization. We're going to skip all that for now, and we're going to jump right to the middle. Right to the middle of the change that you may be in or right in the middle of that change that you've been in the past.

So for a little bit of context, I was working at a large pharma company. We were changing behaviors across thousands of employees. This was a big deal. It was a new project management methodology, but it changed the way we planned, it changed the way we executed it changed the way we reported, it changed everything. We made great progress to pat ourselves on the back a little bit. We got out of the gates fast. Everything was going well. People knew what we were doing and they knew why we were doing it. Then we hit a roadblock. It's like the organization just stopped and didn't know how to move forward, wasn't sure if they wanted to move forward.

I was talking to a colleague of mine, maybe commiserating a little bit, and he looked at me and smiled and said, "Do you know where we're at?" I don't know if he was talking room number or geographic location, and apparently I didn't. He asked again. He's like, "Do you know where we're at?" I was like, "No, I guess I don't." He said, "Metaphorically speaking, right? We've climbed that change mountain. We're standing at the cliff, we're standing at the precipice of change is great, you go first." This doesn't just happen most of the time. This happens all the time.

With any large change that you're driving, people get stuck at change is great, you go first. Why, because it's scary, right? It's harder to do things differently. Everyone's busy, and it's easier to go back to doing it how you've always done. The organizational processes may not have changed. The new reward systems and measures may not be in place. The new reward systems and measures may not be in place. Certain functional leaders, perhaps are allowing specific projects to bypass the new way of operations. Culture is hard to overcome. All of these need to be managed, and preferably proactively before you get to this point.

So if you can, when you get here, burn the boats. I'm sure we're all familiar, 1519, Hernandez Cortez arrived in a new world, 600 men. Upon arrival, he had him burn the boats. Why? Because, he knew change was going to be hard. He knew people would want to go back to the old way, get back on the ship and sail back to where they came from, but that wasn't an option. So as much as you can, if we can eliminate the old way. If we can make it easier to do it, work in the new way, you will be more successful. 

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Pintail Solutions is a niche management advisory firm focused on enabling overall project and portfolio delivery, developing and deploying new business strategies, and delivering construction projects across life science organizations.

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