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Capitalizing on Complexity – important new study

I have just come across an IBM study (‘Capitalizing on Complexity’) which reveals that the world’s private and public sector leaders believe that a rapid escalation of “complexity” is the biggest challenge confronting them. They expect it to continue — indeed, to accelerate — in the coming years.

They are equally clear that their enterprises today are not equipped to cope effectively with this complexity in the global environment. And they identify “creativity” as the single most important leadership competency for enterprises seeking a path through this complexity.

As the chairman of IBM says: “events, threats and opportunities aren’t just coming at us faster or with less predictability; they are converging and influencing each other to create entirely unique situations.”

Those of you who have been following my blogs will know that I have been preaching the importance of understanding the exponential nature of complexity. Managers typically underestimate the complexity of their projects and overestimate the capability of their organisations to cope with it.

The IBM study includes the advice: “predict and act,” not just “sense and respond.”  I suppose I shouldn’t be too surprised to read what is almost a direct quote from David Snowden’s description of how to deal with complexity, in his Cynefin Framework – after all, he did that work while he was still at IBM…

Over the past few weeks I have been seeing a real convergence of thinking from companies, experts and people I meet, that draws me to the conclusion that there are some fundamental qualities in organisations that manage complexity and change successfully, and that we should be able to identify and promote these for the benefit of our clients.

More on that anon.

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March 8, 2011 Posted by | business change management | Leave a comment

If you could improve your change project’s ROI by 10%, what would that be worth to you?

In my seminar in February, I showed how the Change Equation methodology provides a way to quickly identify and quantify the barriers to a successful change project.

Due to the high demand for places at this free event, I have arranged to run another seminar on 25th March at the City Business Library at the Guildhall in London.

DATE:  2pm-4.30pm on Friday 25th March.

WHERE: City Business Library, Aldermanbury, London EC2V 7HH

TO BOOK: email cbl@cityoflondon.gov.uk

This seminar is free but you have to book your place in advance. Don’t leave it too late to book your place!

More information about the seminar at: http://www.imaginist.co.uk

Why attend the seminar?

Change projects have a tendency to fail – in fact only 70% ever deliver their full benefits.

Peter Duschinsky, Managing Director, The Imaginist Company, says that this is because most project managers and their bosses underestimate the complexity of their projects and overestimate the capability of the organisation to cope with change. That’s because project risk and complexity is not linear, but EXPONENTIAL.

Peter goes on to claim that conventional change management interventions designed to control the outcomes of a project will FAIL completely if it’s a truly complex project.

So how do you know if your project is complex? And how do you assess the capability of your organisation to cope with change? Come along and find out!

If you could improve your change programme’s ROI by 10%, what would that be worth to you?

Here’s what people said about the 2010 seminar series:

“Many thanks, Peter, for the seminar during the week, which I found very useful”

“Thanks Peter, I came away with plenty of food for thought after your seminar.”

“Just a short email to thank-you for this afternoons session. I found the content and your style very smooth making the knowledge easy to take in.”

“Thank you very much for the ‘How to manage complex change’ seminar, the ‘Management Culture’ model was excellent as well as the ‘Exponential Complexity.

March 8, 2011 Posted by | business change management, mergers and acquisitions, project and programme management, Project Readiness Healthcheck | Leave a comment