Transformation calling? Are you on the verge of needing a different way of working?

28 February


“Transformation” is both a buzzword and a necessity for organisations today. The rapid pace of change and ongoing disruption means our organisations must be able to adapt and respond to external and internal pressures.

Sometimes this change is an ongoing evolution, adopting a kaizen (continual change for good) approach where many small adaptations result in significant shifts over time. This continuous improvement approach tends to be less disruptive and is often easier on the people in the organisation. If the current state is functional and we can take the time to adapt, bringing people along on the journey with us and engaging all employees in the process of continuous improvement, fostering a sense of ownership and accountability. When you can, we generally recommend taking this gradual, incremental approach to organisation change.

However, sometimes the stakes are too high, the disruption too large and there is no time for the gradual adoption of new practices. Sometimes a large and disruptive transformation is necessary for the organisation to survive. A large transformation is better than gradual change when:

  • Significant and Immediate Change is Required: When an organisation faces substantial market disruption, competitive pressure, or technological shifts that render its current business model obsolete, a large-scale transformation is necessary to realign the organization with the new market reality.
  • Foundational Change is Needed: If the core of what the company does and how it does it needs to change, a large transformation is required to redefine the organisation's direction and operations.
  • New Leadership or Vision: When new leadership comes in with a mandate for change or when there is a strategic decision to take the company in a completely different direction, a large transformation can help to quickly implement this new vision.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions: Integrating different cultures, systems, and processes after a merger or acquisition often necessitates a large transformation to create a unified and efficient new entity[2].
  • Regulatory or Compliance Changes: Significant changes in regulations or the need to comply with new standards can require a comprehensive transformation to meet these new legal requirements[2].
  • Crisis Response: In response to a crisis, such as a financial downturn or a global event like the COVID-19 pandemic, a large transformation may be needed to rapidly adapt to new conditions and ensure survival[1].
  • Scaling for Growth: When scaling up operations to meet growth targets or to enter new markets, a large transformation might be necessary to ensure that the organization's structure and processes can handle the increased scale[1].
  • Digital Transformation: Embracing the full potential of digital technologies often requires a large transformation, as it involves reorganizing the business around digital capabilities, which can be a fundamental shift[2].

In these scenarios, the need for change is usually driven by external factors or strategic decisions that require a new base state, rather than just improvements to the existing one. The transformation seeks to change the organization's trajectory in a significant way, which cannot be achieved through incremental improvements alone[2][5].

In the dynamic landscape of business, recognizing the scale of transformation needed and setting clear goals are pivotal steps toward sustainable success. At SoftEd, we understand the intricacies of navigating change effectively. Whether your journey involves a comprehensive business overhaul or targeted, gradual enhancements, our expertise is tailored to guide you through the process. Reach out to us today, and let's collaborate to uncover the full potential of your business transformation, ensuring a future-ready and resilient organization.


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This article was written by Shane Hastie, Global Delivery Lead at SoftEd, part of Skills Development Group.

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