2018 Enterprise Data World Conference Report: Organizational Change – The People Factor
In my previous blog I wrote about the value of the data strategy in getting the most out of your data assets. Data strategy impacts the people within that organization tremendously, both business or IT. It is important to be sensitive to the people involved as we believe we are trying to make things better (in your view).
Since data projects will naturally lead to organizational change, you will need to consider the impacts on people. How will the program help them? Will the program create obstacles, in addition to enablers of their goals?
According to Len Silverston in his session at the 2018 Enterprise Data World conference, people have many motivations. Some are career-focused. Some want their job to be interesting. Some want what is best for the organization. Some want a sense of achievement. Others simply want a paycheck. One size does not fit all. Whatever the motivation, it is important to understand these motivations if you want to get buy-in for your projects so that effective collaboration can take place.
For instance, a department manager may be interested in protecting their team so will want to understand the full impacts of the data project on the individuals of that team. Other managers may want to retain control over their domains and may not be interested in openly sharing “their” data. A director whose compensation is based on increased revenue streams and cost cutting will want to understand the financial impacts of the project. An executive may look at your data project with an eye on innovation that will enhance their career path.
In addition to other’s motivations, it is important to understand your own motivations as well. Surprisingly, not as many understand their own motivations as one would think. But it is important if you are the one championing a project. Others will want to know why you want to do something and you will come off with more credibility if you can frame your responses base on your real motivations.
Finding an approach to balancing these competing types of motivations can be hard work. But if you make the effort, you increase the chances of implementing organizational change with your data strategy.
We have already entered an age of accelerated information change. This refers not only to the volume of data, but also to the structures and processes associated with that data. From IoT to AI to Data Science to Robotics, these evolving technologies will have a disruptive impact across all organizations. Organizations will also have to evolve to stay competitive. This evolution will have a direct impact on the organization and its members. You will be better positioned for success by connecting with the people involved which is why McKnight Consulting Group brings an Organizational Change Management practice with all of our implementation work.