Kate Stevenson: Change Starts with a Plan

October 7, 2021

The first step to your journey is figuring out where you want to go.

I've seen several companies start their transformation efforts independently and execute them very successfully. Unfortunately, I've seen many more companies that ultimately abandon their efforts or fail to reach the full potential of their transformation program. The main difference between their success and failure? Lack of a long-term roadmap and comprehensive vision for change.

I like to equate starting a transformation program without a roadmap to that of embarking on a road trip without Google Maps — You're going into unknown territories, hitting every traffic jam, and find yourself on the longest route possible because you didn't have someone telling you where to start, what to avoid, and how to get there in as little time as possible.

How to Create a Long-term Roadmap for Success:

1. Determine What’s Really Needed
Often going into a transformation journey, our clients think they have the answer before analyzing their challenges  “We just need a new system” or “Let’s move everything from System A to System B" — when in reality, many solutions don’t require a new system or point-to-point integrations. Our clients need strong governance, data remediation, integration strategies, optimized processes, and more system controls with their existing systems. A rip and replace won’t solve all your problems. Being intentional with uncovering the problems will ultimately help you determine the right solution for your organization.

2. Let Your Team be Part of the Solution
The most successful transformation efforts include bringing together a committed team of people with a common vision - The people with the most to gain from a transformation are those that perform the work every day.  There will be resistance if the solutions come from the top down and don’t incorporate ideas from the front-line workers. In addition, they have all the ideas and by bringing key people into the solution will foster a more innovative culture.

3. Prioritize What's Important
It’s critical to understand the measurable cost and value of projects when prioritizing your roadmap.  We often tell our clients to prioritize solutions that add value and have the most gain with least budget before projects that have both large value and large budgets. I have seen many executive teams prioritize predictive analytics over getting their foundational solutions in order. As a result, they overspent on high-budget projects where the gain was very little because they weren’t able to fully utilize the information and impact of lesser budgeted items.

Why is a Long-term Roadmap for Success Important?

Regardless of where your organization wants to go, it's going to require a team effort to get you there. Before you can even begin the transformation process, it is vital to start with an assessment of your challenges, create a common vision across the organization, and prioritize a long-term roadmap of how you plan get there.

If your company has an idea of where you'd like to go, but you're not sure how to get there, Novus is here to help.

"Do not go where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
Ralph Waldo Emerson