New Ways of Working Programmes are now quite common in major organisations, this talk and conversation is intended to offer a holistic approach to WoW. It is imperative to be holistic in establishing new ways of working as boundaries to old ways of working in portfolio management, finance, ITIL and HR can very quickly become an impediment to transformation if they are not considered as part of it.
Scaled Organizational Agility is the Future of Work is a talk and discussion with Karl Smith regarding Agile Transformation.
WoW Organization Design Consultancy – Can be remote
Paradigm Interactions offers the service of organizational design consultancy, to meticulously define and organize the structure of companies, create job titles, and allocate resources (i.e. personnel) to improve efficiency and increase productivity. Supporting the making of strategic decisions with regard to company hierarchy and personnel infrastructure.
Experience with the organization, business structuring, business process definition and deployment, recruitment policies and employee reward systems, role and title definition for both senior, mid and junior staff.
Based upon business objectives, strategy, processes and operations. Followed by meticulous planning, analysis and research.
Working with MD’s, Partners and senior managers to make sure the proposed changes are as economical and effective as possible.
No two organisations are the same even in the same sectors, but all are focused on common objectives provide product or service, create consumer engagement, transact and establish consumer engagement lifecycle.
Typical areas where value is realised;
Increase customer acquisition, advocacy and lifetime value
Improved business agility and ability to rapidly respond to change and opportunity
Increased credibility, confidence and influence across the business
Effective delivery against financial targets
Enabling positive behavioural change
Fostering a human centric, transparent, trustworthy and agile culture
Viable, scalable and actionable roadmap to deliver innovation and change
More consistent and sustainable profitability and business growth
Successful, timely delivery of evidence based transformative change
More satisfied and engaged employees with increased retention and productivity
Builds flexibility into business DNA
Supports culture of next best action
Creates a focus on work that delivers value
Reduces management overhead, bureaucracy and timelines
Delivers transparent and scalable working practices
Enables idea to value workflow for executive to customer engagement
Delivers flexible portfolio management
Enables continuous and market responsive evolution
New Ways of Working Programmes are now quite common in major organisations, this consultancy service is intended to offer a holistic approach to WoW. It is imperative to be holistic in establishing new ways of working as boundaries to old ways of working in portfolio management, finance, ITIL and HR can very quickly become an impediment to transformation if they are not considered as part of it.
Identify, agree and prioritise new ideas and opportunities to generate business value
Validation and endorsement of decisions and approach
Enhanced cross-business collaboration, communication and buy in
Agree and define actions and a feasible roadmap
Gain context and insight to enable faster, more informed decisions and actions
More perceived objectivity without political bias
Return on Investment
Exact returns are difficult to stipulate without a scope definition however there are a number of themes;
Flattened hierarchy as management becomes systemic giving a 10% to 40% FTE reduction of management and increasing the producer to non producer ratio
Increased throughput of value creating work (up as much as 60%) as unplanned work is revealed and dramatically reduced (down as much as 60%)
Increased visibility at executive leadership level with new capacity to refocus the entire organisation every three months
Operational measurement of all work to indicate blockages in the flow of work to provide continuous improvements
Operational flexibility as the focus moves to skills and teams over time served and individual role
Staff galvanization and focus as pay and rewards become team based and transparent
The consultancy service takes a building block approach so that the client always has a clear line of sight on what they get for their money. Each of the following steps builds a bespoke client service, responsive to both the experience and context of the client. Additionally is allows for course correction as part of an iterative engagement focused on the client Subject Matter Expertise augmented by Transformation Consultants with numerous framework experiences.
Initial consultancy to define scope – 2 to 4 weeks to be agreed in writing prior to commencement
Proposal presentation to refine scope – 1 to 2 weeks to be agreed in writing prior to commencement
The exact components and size of work will be defined during the engagement phase
Delivery strategy document
Benefits proposal document
Delivery model proposal document
Governance model proposal document
Scaling strategy document
Target operating model proposal document
All staff HR contracts review action
Pilot proposal for first area document
Team building – size and locations defined in consultancy
Support document creation
The delivery team will change over the course of an engagement in the following way;
2% of total team in Engagement
10% of total team in Consultancy
30% of total team in Delivery for pilot delivery
100% of total team in Delivery for scaled delivery
30% of total team in Delivery for hand over to in house delivery teams
10% of total team in Delivery for hand over to in house leadership teams
Actuals for delivery in an organisation of 90,000 people in 8 main locations globally
4 consultant team in Engagement
20 consultant team in Consultancy
60 consultant team in Delivery for pilot delivery
200 consultant team in Delivery for scaled delivery
60 consultant team in Delivery for hand over to in house delivery teams
20 consultant team in Delivery for hand over to in house leadership teams
Timelines are subject to scope, complexity and team size the above was 2 years.
Our Requirements of You
Ensuring an executive sponsor from your organisation is allocated to the engagement, communicates the rationale behind it and signs off any ‘Terms of Reference’
Assisting in all possible ways to ensure that a contract, (and confidentiality agreement where necessary) is in place, in advance of any work commencing
Ensuring all support is in place and access is granted for all and any required data, processes, policies, meeting rooms and nominated resources to enable successful delivery of the engagement
Ensuring sponsor availability within the agreed timeline, to resolve any significant issues that may impact the timely completion of the engagement, if not resolved in a timely manner.
Our Commitments to You
Provide support throughout service delivery using our World Class Professionals and Subject Matter Experts
Provide high quality deliverables in a timely manner and in line with agreements upon engagement with the client. (Any changes to this will be mutually agreed in writing, in advance, between all involved parties)
Provide deep insights and genuine value-add in all possible areas throughout the engagement
Provide progress updates and feedback at regular intervals, agreed in advance or at the engagement ‘kick off session’
Respect all personal and professional development of client team members throughout the engagement
Deliverables WoW Organisational Transformation
WoW service design of organization
WoW enacted service design as pilot
WoW enacted service design as organisational transformation
WoW target operating model
WoW replacement for ITIL
WoW enterprise work funding model
WoW enterprise roles definition
Service Delivery Model Project Based Engagement
Project based engagements operate on the basis of agreeing work and any outcomes or milestones for delivery in advance of commencement of any engagement in a ‘Statement of Work’. Prices are fixed for the agreed deliverables and should changes be required, these may incur changes to delivery costs. Payment for Project Based Engagements are agreed on a case-by-case basis, giving consideration to risk, contract value, client payment history, relationship longevity and duration.
User Experience has become the solution focused end of User Centred Design, being based in normal practice on usability, accessibility and user research over time.
The Term User Experience/User Centred Design and Human Centered Design are interchangeable because the International Standard changed from being User Centred Design to Human Centered Design.
In my other posts it should be clear by now that I have been involved in what now called UX for some considerable time. I have previously mentioned how UX moved from the strategic and its equal status to enterprise architecture into software development and becoming visual design for a time. Well it’s on the move again, just as UX incorporated marketing components with repeatable science at its outset and seeded Agile with user stories and human context, so now it has moved into organisational and cultural transformation.
Organisational and Cultural Transformation
There are now in 2019 many people talking about organisational and cultural transformation and change however it is clear that what they mean is everyone below the C-suite needs to change. However organisational and cultural transformation is the whole organisation otherwise it is just a rebrand without actual change. More especially culture is born from action not just intent and this is what organisations who want to change are discovering. They want to take their staff on a transformation journey and to evolve their engagement not simply recasting them with new role titles and responsibilities. They also expect to evolve the transformation in flight gaining a true understanding of what already works well and folding it into the new culture. This kind of transformation takes a highly adaptive and pragmatic mindset in its leadership and enablement.
The historical focus of organisational design has been to establish one standard structure across a whole organisation. The value of this is to standardize command and control mechanisms which is supposed to simplify reporting and oversight. It forces all work through it regardless of its priority or type of work it is.
The old four types of organizational structures are;
Matrix Organizational Chart
Flat Organizational Chart
However the New Ways of Working in adoption of HCD, Agile, Lean and DevOps don’t utilize these structures. In fact instead of starting with organizational structures it focuses on work to define the structures needed to deliver it. This is very intensive consulting activity and often led by external consultants not vested in internal politics and previous alliances.
And this explains why most new organisational transformations will fail before they start because they are focused on hierarchies not getting work done efficiently with a culture that rewards and honours people who deliver.
The common structure of work is linear and directional often following the concepts of grouped specialisations handing work to each other having completed their activities. This creates a slow flow of work with bottlenecks around capacity. When unexpected work arrives and depending upon its priority it can destroys the whole flow of work and create ripples impacting the whole organisation. This behaviour with work is derived from industrial production techniques often related to the Ford production model of manufacturing.
In adoption of HCD, Agile, Lean and DevOps, work types are defined first and then the organisational structure is derived from the work types. The consultancy around the organisational design should be unique to each organisation in order to both facilitate taking porfilio work into viable and validated and measured delivery.
Psychology of Transformation
In large organisations there have been lots of transformations and people are used to dealing with them, adept at absorbing language and funds without actual transformation or the derivative cultural change. So as far as possible the psychology of transformation is defensive for the mainstream of organisations. Delivering long term cultural change therefore requires a top down adoption in order to establish an authoritative perspective of We Change rather than You Change.
In new ways of working YOU change is not the way to succeed it must be WE change together
Human Centred Organisational Design TOM
At this point I’d normally publish the exactly how to do it, but to be honest in the wrong hands it’s a stick of dynamite, so I won’t just hand it out. Below is the Portfolio Planning for Business Agility for an Organisation focused on a Work Type Taxonomy rather than hierarchies.
If you’d like like to find out how to do this from someone who’s done it in an organisation with 80,000 staff contact me.
You would think by this late stage in the life of Agile and Agility that the concepts would be well embedded in organisational transformation, people assessments and processes. From my experience I’ve never seen Agile actually fail, I seen people pervert its meaning and make up their own versions then blame a framework for personal incompetence. Likewise I’ve not seen DevOps fail either.
There is something at the heart of business that hates the idea of being associated with failure in European culture. It’s not even logical as Socrates proposed a logical form that constantly tested (hence willingness even a desire to fail to find truth) by debate. The Socratic method is a form of cooperative argumentative dialogue between individuals, based on asking and answering questions to stimulate critical thinking and to draw out ideas and underlying presumptions. Concern around failure relies on deep seated fears around not being able to prove worth and conversely the chance that any hint of failure transfers on to the person rather than the thing.
“Fail Fast, fail Small to avoid failing Big and failing Slow”
Fail Fast in organisational transformation, people assessments and processes
If your going to really take this on you should start at the beginning, planning the programme and making the case. Instead of getting some expensive consultants who want to try something in your company (no many how many times they say they have done it elsewhere) get one or two Agile DevOps strategists (these are certified Scrum practitioners) and get 60/100 of your staff from all levels into a room and do a two day hackathon. Will they hack your company, no they will hack the problem and hidden problems to define the ‘Problem Statement’ on day 1, on day 2 they will map out all the moving part to define the scope. Could it fail, absolutely, could it save 12 months of 6 consultants on £2500 a day absolutely.
Start at the beginning with people too, most management exists either to direct work (which should be automated or manage people who are not trusted) or to circumvent freakishly hard processes to get the most simple things done. If your planning on changing the emphasis in your company from hierarchy to teams and outcomes, you must offer the incumbents a way to revalidate themselves or they will actively seeking to cripple or pervert the programme to suit themselves. Quickly test the water with an alternative career path based on knowledge not prestige or headcount. See how many people will sign up to not having to manage people, be appreciated for their knowledge and be paid them same as now? You may be surprised.
Processes in this scenario begin to take care of themselves but its always go to run some ‘what if’ or ‘unhappy path’ testing too, to create checks and balances around change.
Fail Small in organisational transformation, people assessments and processes
When you have worked out your plan, don’t enact the whole thing choose a critical path (if thats what fits with your company targets), a happy path for customers or a low risk path and do the MVE, that’s minimum viable experience to success. Viability in transformation is really important and often missed, viability is the whole not the part in transformation.
“Don’t make a door handle that doesn’t unlock the door”
You’d think that would be impossible but the MVP of a door handle is a door handle that looks like a handle making the mechanism to open a door is the MVE. Often in a transformation people focus on rebranding, a new and more exclusive hierarchy, but that is just the look of things, making it work means that the people and machines that customers and colleagues interact with it, do so with higher quality, are quicker, traceable, with measurable delivery.
Fail Big and Slow
This is pretty much a description of most businesses in their current state though many would not see themselves that way. My first question to any organisation is ‘where do you get your money from’, ‘why do you get it’, ‘are there anythings expected of you to continue to get it’. Weather your a corporation, government organisation or corner shop, getting the money to operate and pay people is part of the clear line around purpose and value. When you have clarity on those compare your ideals with where you are now, are you failing steadily, but very slowly? If the answer is yes, you need help. Contact us here
Business Agility is about people not technology, mindsets not toolsets and value not productivity
As mindless as many organisations think their workers, they are not in the slightest led by others. They in fact appropriate information through their own lenses, against their own rational, values, cultures and experience to date. With this much translation its not a surprise there is such a huge loss in critical path focus and interaction.
For many Agile is a thing that happens to Software and Technology people and nothing to do with Executive Management, Business Strategy or the Business in general. However there have been notable advances in how the concepts of Agile DevOps are brought into business enablement since 2016. The evolution includes Enterprise Agility and Business Agility, Agile being location agnostic can be applied anywhere.
People not Technology
It’s easy to focus on Technology as a solution to problems, but it cannot solve poor processes (or business models) and human engagement (or non engagement). The Agile DevOps focus is therefore people, being the high value resources for complex solutions and the low value for repetitive activities that could be and should be templated or automated.
Mindsets not Toolsets
What organisations need is behavioural change, digging people out of entrenched mindsets that are localised around their skillsets and work and think in ecosystems around the whole lifecycle of work that adds value to the organisation and its customers.
Value not Productivity
Not all work is valuable, in fact producers (those who do the work that bring in value) in most organisations ratio is dropping compared to non producers (managers, support functions). In some organisations for every three people who produce value there are seven non producers, all are productive but the three producers are funding the non producers.
The company that I am a CEO of in the United States of America, Paradigm Interactions Inc. has just issued the following press release;
To confirm Paradigm Interactions Inc. has been contacted by a New York City, Venture Capital company regarding investment, a defacto buyout.
At this time we have declined
Paradigm Interactions Inc. is involved the next generation post smart device internet as part of it’s project Charlemagne and based upon our Open Networking Ecosystem Protocol Patent until this project is completed in 2017 we are not considering any offers.
We said no, because it was a significantly under valued offer, given the IoT and Blockchain US Patents we are working on, still I was not aware we were even on anyones list yet. The yearly value of the market represented by our Open Networking Ecosystem Protocol (ONEP) patent in just the USA is estimated to be worth $100,000,000,000.
Karl Smith will be talking at Digital Transformation 2017 on 23rd Feb Our Dynamic Earth Edinburgh organised by Scot TECH http://www.scot-tech.com/
Digital is about People, not technology. Digital is a response to the desire of people to focus their lives towards quick and easy tasks, simplify processes and utilise their time in micro experiences. The challenge for Digital Transformation is to not get trapped in limiting technology solutions but to really meet the desire of people to have less stress, highly engaging and focused experiences with shorter duration’s while maintaining quality and accountability.
Karl Smith has learned from clients in USA, Russia, China, Japan, Switzerland, UK, Germany, France, Australia, Brazil, Sweden etc how to transform them, not just, what to change.
Karl Smith is a highly creative and motivated person with keen insight ability. He is a critical thinker and is able to rapidly discover the essence of problems then define, communicate, create buy-in and deliver solutions. He positively motivates those around him and is able to engender a great team dynamic by leading from the front. He has business experience spanning 28 years at comparable levels in fields including defence, industry, construction, fashion, finance, banking, FMCG, property, publishing, healthcare, travel, policing, crown office, local and central government.
Recent organisational design roles include launching Enterprise User Experience in Accenture and setting up Wipro Digital.
He has a wide experience in management consultancy and digital technology including business management, strategy, innovation, marketing, advertising, governance, change management, project management, definition, design and delivery. He has been honoured by the British Computer Society for his eminence in IT leadership over the last 15 years with a Fellowship.
He mainly focuses on customer experience engagement and management in both B2B and B2C sectors but is also an inventor involved in creating new human-computer ecosystems. He works with directors and stakeholders whose main focus is increasing efficiency, transaction frequency and accuracy through the provision of knowledge driven, context focused, human-centered and responsive, future proofed (IoT, Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence), progressive interactive organisational change, innovative business processes and technology systems.
“the difference between an engaged customer and an enraged customer is their experience, which customers would you prefer to have?”
“as a customer experience expert, I have no opinion, I wait and get the opinion of the customer as they are the subject matter experts and combine it with business strategy and acumen”
He is involved in defining new business concepts, strategies, requirements, governance (ISO/IEC 38500) and solutions that support businesses and organisation’s involved in transforming themselves to be adaptive and future proof themselves for market disruption.
Digital is not just another name for Technology or a Delivery Channel but it is a Pervasive Customer Engagement Productization
Having a digital channel, a CRM tool or a marketing strategy involving social media, does not make you a Digital Business in fact Digital Businesses have Digital Products. A Digital Product is not the envelope, like a website, app, message or other container, but the thing that is purchased, transferred or acquired by customers.
As Technologies come and go, Customers are eternal
Without Digital Products your company won’t be able to access the coming benefits of the Internet of Things, Big Data or Artificial Intelligence.
What is Digital Transformation?
Digital Transformation is an evolutionary step towards the true open market that the Internet of Things and the Internets of All represents. For many companies digital transformation is about digitising existing processes which should be discarded completely.
What does transformation and change look like?
There are many factors that can create the need for transformation and change changing markets, changing customers, disruption from unexpected sources to name a few.
There are a lot of people who miss the point of transformation or change programs, who simply revert to their worst fears.
Kurt Russell’s portrayal of Wyatt Earp in Tombstone does appear to be lots of people experience of transformation projects and in every view there is a grain of truth. The truth in this view is he has authority, drive and power and that the change is terrifying to people who thought they could control it.
Are you sure you need Digital Transformation?
It’s really important to count the cost and the gain before embarking on digital transformation.
Digital Transformation will disrupt you business, your staff and your customers.
And people who claim otherwise have never done one.
Why do we need to Transform, did we fail?
There is always a faint feeling of fear and desperation on a transformation or change project. This is because concerns over perception of value, the person or persons involved value to their organisation and their sense of self worth.
DID YOU FAIL, YES your not superhuman
You have not managed to pack the detailed life of a subject expert life into your already business expert life. So in effect NO, its supposed to be the first step in wisdom, the recognition that you need help.
The real issue for business people is how do you acquire that help, do it in a way that does not damage your credibility and still be able to influence that change so that it does not wreck your carefully crafted world.
Creating a Terms of Reference Document (TOR) and Business Case
The main role of the business is to own the problem, not the solution. It’s really important that the business is candid in their appraisal of the issues. Often businesses will focus on perceived solutions, to the perceived problem. That is a way to waste huge amounts of money and never fix anything.
Writing the Terms of Reference defines where the business thinks the problem is, sets out who is engaged from the business and suggests a high level timeline. The TOR is a guideline to the Transformation but not a rule book. The TOR provides targets and key performance indicators (KPI’s) so that the Transformation is measurable and understood from the “as is” situation described in the TOR.
For example; we need a mobile site, why? because our competitors have one and everyone needs to be mobile, why? So we are buying a mobile platform, whoa! Let’s go back to the beginning, what is the problem? “We are losing market share”, okay, what are the demographics of your target market, do they use mobile devices? “We don’t know”. Don’t you think you should find out before you buy a mobile platform? That’s not a made up conversation.
After the initial consultancy to determine the target of activity in the TOR a Business Case can be created to gain funding by explaining the impact of transformation. The Business Case is critical to distil and focus the programs activity so that actual value is given from all the ensuing activity.
Both the TOR and the Business Case are created by the Business with assistance from internal resources or contractors.
The Psychology of Change Management
How transformation is framed, communicated and done in organisations is often not enough to overcome the deep seated fears of the people it will affect.
This is why you may have been invited to be involved, it is not to steer the solution but to provide expert knowledge, regardless things will either change or the business will contract. Being on the project team from the client side is not your time to shine, you already did or you would not be there.
I have worked on both sides of transformation projects and I really do understand the personal and professional need to have impact. But most importantly was your impact an enabler, if you sort to set limits was it for reasons of context? Can you explain the rich knowledge behind your behaviour and passion, the articulation is critical to getting this knowledge into the project and benefiting your company.
Transformation and Change is not just focused on Technology
If you plan to start this process of transformation you will need to accept that nothing is sacred. Transforming anything means looking at everything without preference and changing or removing it completely without regret. It will change people, their roles and responsibilities, divisional politics, funding models and budgets, business governance may be rewritten completely, processes may be discarded and loved software and technology scrapped.
But the choice is stark either engage digitally or accept second or a hundredth place in the market, until the customers who don’t use Digital die off and your business joins them.
In the same way that digital downloads has crippled the mass market of vinyl and CD’s does Blockchain means the end of financial services and banking straight through processing and the accountancy service model?
By reviewing the cost reduction culture of recent years it is understandable why the banking industry has become ripe for Lean Straight Through Processing (STP) and Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) Accountancy. But like other change and transformation activities embedding irrelevant processes in technologies, STP and then BPO accountancy is missing the essential point, they are no longer required if Blockchain is deployed.
instead of building Blockchain in the image of Banks, Banks should be rebuilt in the image of Blockchain, dramatically reducing process complexity and overheads
A Blockchain model for STP and BPO Accountancy
There are several factors about Blockchain that make it eminently more suitable for the highly regulated environment of STP and Accounting than software and middle and back office staff (regardless of how their provision is acquired). And of course you can dramatically reduce your expensive accounting staff costs as reconciliations, account status etc is automated as part of the chain, even regulatory reporting can be automated and regulators can have direct access to the blockchain through a rights and roles model only seeing at the right level what the banks and financial institutions want them to see.
Blockchain is distributed
A Blockchain (assets or liquidity) can be distributed to other Banks, Clients, Original Owners, Regulators, Tax Offices at an organisational level it can also be distributed to divisions and functions within organisations.
The nature of Smart Contracts can be defined for each organisation through the use of a Content Object Model around any given Item, with information facets in much the same way as WCMS systems are setup. Transaction data is transparent based on a Roles and Rights Model within an organisation and externally, once set up for each User Type reporting is automatic and no collation (from other sources or currency factors as these are embedded) or interpretation is required, this totally removes the accountancy functions.
Blockchain is not editable
Because blockchain is not editable
an editable blockchain would be called a Database and is essentially not a blockchain
all charges and transaction errors must be added to the chain and will be visible according to the chains Rights and Roles Model. Therefore nothing is lost and the chain will be compliant to regulation through its architecture rather than by addition of more processes.
Blockchain is smart (blockchain future-proofs itself)
Because Blockchain enables complex content object models, Smart Contracts allow the addition of new information. Unlike a database that would require a rewrite for additional information
when a Smart Contract has additional information added it updates the current block and evolves the chain
Blockchain will have a global impact
For years technology has impacted low skilled worker often removing humans altogether, the use of artificial intelligence supports the removal of strategy and management, the IoT removal of logistics and retail while Blockchain will initially impact banking and insurance but it also holds the potential to manage all information in a traceable and secure way.
Any country reliant on the financial services sector for jobs and taxation will need to look for an alternative source of income given the dramatic decrease in staff required to run a bank, trading or insurance company in the near future.
I offer several strategic consultancy services one of them is Organizational Design this can involve launching a new service or creating new divisions or even whole Global companies.
Governance is a Business Enabler
Having written several enterprise governance documents using ISO/IEC 385000 as a template I am well aware that governance is one of those areas that is much misunderstood.
Well constructed and managed governance is open and obvious, it is designed to enable business and has an active and transparent policy creation and updating process. However, there is a huge amount of governance set up to chain the business to policies that are truly complex, meaningless in the current context and have become a power base in their own right.
Governance should be used as a route to evolve policies (that in turn establish processes) that are market responsive in a framework that effectively manages risk and regulatory compliance.
Governance can build Design Thinking and Service Design directly into the core policies and processes of an organisation
Digital is a new type of Business not a Channel
The reason Governance is an important factor is that different behaviours in business require different Governance.
Digital is established, interacts and delivers differently from other businesses, it creates conflict with the existing status quo
These stages and the processes they create in a start-up will create conflict or roadblocks to success with Venture Capitalists and existing internal Business structures, institutions and organisations unless there is Adjusted Governance and ultimately adjusted accountability, effectiveness measurement, recruitment policies, recruitment process, career paths etc.
Adjusted Governance is the magic bullet in setting up a Digital Business
Adjusted Governance enables Digital to work quickly and effectively within the more volatile framework of immediate and rapid response business strategy, investment rules and return on investment than those used in existing enterprises or global organisation structures.
I have yet to work on a Start-up that has got adjusted governance set up before it becomes a critical hinderance
I always ask if there is adjusted governance and without fail, I am told it is not required. This comes down to a basic misunderstand of the usage of the word Digital. Digital Consulting really means Agency Consulting with Scaled Delivery, it is not the Digital Market Channel that Commerce thinks it is at all.
I offer several strategic consultancy services one of them is Organizational Design this can involve launching a new service or creating new divisions or even whole Global companies.
Being a founder of anything is quite exciting, especially if you are funded in advance. I think that was the thing that really helped get this project off the ground. While you know history will be written as you work and rewritten after you leave the following case study in several parts is about how you really set up a Global Digital Consultancy.
Founding a New Consultancy is all about Market Differentiators
The starting point for this consultancy was a discussion between the CEO and an up and coming Executive. I can only relay the gist of what was said as it was relayed to me to get me onboard with the project. The names have been removed because it’s not important exactly who only what is said;
CEO: Executive we need to get into Digital, digital is the next big thing, can you get some people together who can tell our digital story to the world?
Executive: Yes I will get a mix of people and keep mixing until we find people who the market will accept as our face.
CEO: Executive what is digital to you, its not Technology or Consulting we have tried those angles and have not got traction in the market?
Executive: I’m not sure, but let me come back to you.
It started with three of us, plus an Executive. We worked together to define what is Digital, for while we all had our own ideas, we needed a consensus view to build a business that people could relate to, buy into and attribute value to.
Definition of Digital
If digital is not technology or consulting, what is it. For us we looked at the experience of digital to define it.
Digital is adaptive, agile and lean
Digital is rapid, cuts through red tape, evolves
Digital is engaging, exciting and challenging
Digital is tangible, easy to explain and does not rely on PowerPoint
Digital is about people’s experience of a product or service not the delivery mechanism.
Digital sits at the cross over point between strategy and design*, design* and technology and technology and strategy, with people at the centre
note*: the others wanted to use UX, but because of the infighting between UX, CX, IxD, Service Design, Design Thinking, Etc., I suggested just using Design to catch them all.
No one thing Strategy, Design, Technology is more important they all need to be engaged in a Digital Solution else they become a point of failure in the future. Everyone in a client business is part of digital too, including accounts, legal, production, operations, delivery, marketing as they are all the experience customers have of a companies Success or Failure to fulfil the engagement.
From my perspective we appeared to create a hierarchy but most importantly internally we got rid of the separation between consultants and technologists because useful people are not just one thing, they are complex.
For me like most people who have focused on Customer Experience the ability to work at a Strategic level or on complex Technology was often not possible because recruiters and clients don’t understand our profiles as technical. In this start-up it was important for me to break people capabilities out from the narrow points of reference of “I don’t see it on the CV”. This also enabled me to hire widely and easily people whose real skills were lost on the market, but not on me.
Once we had this concept of;
Blended people providing a Blended Service
we were ready to start Defining the Propositions, Processes and setting up the Capability Management. If only it was that simple, the next instalment will explain why.