Prepare your Organization for Change: 6 Key Capabilities

Nov 9, 2018
Written by
Marc Lankhorst
Marc Lankhorst

Prepare your Organization for Change: 6 Key Capabilities

Few companies have a systematic and reliable way of translating their business strategy into action across all relevant parts of the organization. Research on digital transformations by MIT Sloan [1] distinguishes between the ‘what’ (what does an organization want to achieve) and the ‘how’ (how can an organization realize change) and shows that organizations that focus on the ‘how’ turn out to be much better at executing transformations. They don’t waste too much time thinking about what the future may look like; they make sure they are prepared when the need for change arises. We like to call these organizations ‘adaptive’.

Transforming an organization into an adaptive enterprise is not easy. It requires you to enable, execute and accelerate change on all levels of the organization, and stay in control at the same time. How do you do this?

We do not believe in a step-by-step method for business transformation and change, since ‘one size fits all’ approaches seldom work. Instead, truly adaptive enterprises in our experience focus on six key capabilities, shown in the figure below. If you want to be adaptive, you need to:

  1. Simplify: Complexity is the enemy of change. It causes uncertainty and undesirable side-effects.
  2. Innovate: You need to keep trying new things. Create space to learn and evolve.
  3. Collaborate: Adapting to changing circumstances is a joint effort. Work together towards shared goals.
  4. Accelerate: Your environment is changing faster than ever and you must keep up. Change the way you change.
  5. Decide: Decisions need to be made ot all levels of the organization. You can’t always wait for the ‘higher-ups’, but at the same time you have to stay aligned along the same goals.
  6. Control: Compliance and risk management cannot be neglected. Transparency is key.

6 Key Capabilities

In today’s digital age, everyone aims to use IT effectively to digitize their daily operations. Why not use the power of software to enable and grow your change capabilities as well?

To help, our latest ebook goes more into depth on these 6 capabilities and gives you guidance on how to become a truly adaptive enterprise and to thrive in this era of change.

Software on its own does not make your organization more adaptive, but it is an essential instrument in handling large amounts of information, making well-informed decisions, and executing change more effectively. Collaborative business design software provides a single source of truth on the current state and future plans of the organization and is a key enabler for adaptive enterprises.

We recently published the eBook ‘The Adaptive Enterprise’ in which we explain our vision on these challenges of change and control in complex enterprises, and describe the capabilities mentioned above in more detail. Click the link to download the eBook.

[1] “Digital Transformation: a roadmap for billion-dollar organizations”, MIT Sloan, 2011

ALSO CHECK: In case you missed it: Combining ArchiMate® 3.0 with Other Standards & Techniques – Summary