Tag Archives: Process

Culture Shock & Other Things

Creating change is easy  (ok not that easy, but easier…).  Sustaining change, is hard.

I can cut my hair, quit my job, jump on the wagon, scrap all my systems, decide on new systems, all quite easily.  Sustaining these changes well is a whole different story.

Implementing a new process in to a business I have decided is a whole lot like losing weight.  With a goal in sight and sheer determination just about anyone can lose weight.  It’s exciting seeing the change and the benefit… enough to make the pain worth it.  But once you’ve hit your goal, a lifetime of bad habits and comfort-based behaviours start creeping in.   Before you know it life takes over and we’ve slipped back to what we know best or are most familiar with.  Of course this will at some point cause us to blame the process (or in this example whatever fad diet we got the results with) leading us to select another process – and we’re off again.  Change has to be sustainable.

Change in the workplace is similar.  We have a problem, so we find a solution, implement and often voila! we get results.  But over time we slip back in to our old habits, back to whatever is most comfortable.  My advice?  Don’t ignore the steps required to make change sustainable, and don’t ditch the process when things go a little wobbly for a new, shinier process (unless yours really is awful).  Consistency in an organisation can be a real battle, but one worth fighting, as this is what real growth is built upon.

The Princess And The Process


Creative Commons License photo credit: Roebot

I am a self-confessed process junkie.  Love the stuff.  Anything that takes longer than 30 seconds I am convinced there must be a process for to make it go faster.

Process is what Happy Endings are made of.  Creating process, taking vision for the future and carving a way, makes the pauper in to a princess.  And if you’re really good, process can make you a linchpin.

Not convinced?  Check out this excerpt from the Harvard Business Review post “The Right CEO Personality for Process Improvement”

“As I think about companies that compete on consistent, low cost, reliable operations, most have or had leaders who were process innovators, such as Herb Kelleher at Southwest Airlines, Sam Walton at Wal-Mart, Ray Kroc at McDonalds, Jeff Bezos at Amazon.com, and Fred Smith at FedEx. Before he was co-CEO at Citigroup, John Reed came out of IT and operations. In companies where process excellence is a competitive advantage, he’s the kind of candidate CEO that more boards should be looking for. Boards need to ensure that an operations orientation is a key criterion for succession planning in organizations where process improvement is a strategic imperative.”  – Brad Power

Process can seem like it could be constricting, controlling, imagination-less.  In actual fact it frees you from the hamster wheel of doing twice as much due to a lack of process.  Once you streamline your product, your service offering, your internal strategy, you in return gain the freedom (and time) to be truly creative.