Organisations are in effect human systems, put in place to achieve certain aims. On the human side we are dealing with each Individual, and on the system side we are dealing with the Organisation overall and its component parts.
Underpinning the behaviour of any individual or organisation is ‘Human Nature’. Underpinning the performance (functioning) of any individual or organisation is its level of learning.
Recent advances in our understanding of Change, Resistance and Agility by Dr. Myles Sweeney produced ‘Dynamic Systems Maturity Theory (DSMT)’ which explains the historical high failure rates of change initiatives (circa 70%) to date, and provides new guidance and techniques that can significantly reduce the risk of change failure and improved Agility. Organisation Performance and Practice is underpinned by a complex set of interdependent variables, often described as ‘Capabilities’ which can be measured and improved because of our understanding of ‘Developmental Learning’. Each of the following improves through learning in the same way; -
Human Performance Improvement
Change Management Process
Capability Improvement Process
In an Organisation System, these are interrelated and interdependent, and DSMT brings together the knowledge and techniques that pulls together the underpinning ‘Learning Process’ in a simple, logical and sequential improvement roadmap individuals and teams can use to drive improvement, packaged as The Organisation Capability Maturity Framework (OrgCMF™).
Existing Models for Change Management tend to focus on either the Individual or the Organisation, with limited integration of the two in their underlying science. They have moved us forward in our practices of managing change, and as specific point solutions to addressing change and change issues, are valuable tools. However, they have not significantly impacted the 70% Failure Rates of change initiatives over past decades.
Dr. Sweeney’s research though initially driven by the need to reduce change failure rates, was also influenced by the complex, sophisticated and dynamic environment organisations exist in today, and the belief that though powerful in their own right, existing models are not robust enough to effectively deal with an organisation’s needs to build and maintain Agility, Innovation, Productivity, Collaboration and Leadership. We are in a unique situation in history where, at the same time, most of the Organisation Environmental Forces are changing or in an uncertain state.
Political (Move towards extremes, Uncertainty-Brexit, Interference)
Technological (Digital, Disruption, New Models)
Environmental (Climate Change, Food supply, Resource Allocation & Access)
Demographic (Migration, Ageing, Population growth)
Regulatory (Trade, Data Protection/Privacy, White collar crime)
Economic (Global v National agendas, economic cycles)
Resistance can be defined as the willingness to accept or comply with something, or the ability not to be affected by something. It applies to individuals, groups/teams or organisations. In the context of organisation change resistance there is a strong interrelationship between the individual, group and or organisation resistance. Agility is the speed, responsiveness and appropriateness in response to a trigger for change. Agility is heavily determined by the level of resistance in the system and can be presented on a continuum;
Because of the interrelationship between Individual and Organisation Resistance and both the similar and different forces that influence Resistance, our change Model needs to be able to focus on both Individual & Organisation, in one approach, with appropriate emphasis on where the blockages exist. This is one of the strengths of the OrgCMF™ Model & Assessment Tools.
The Recommended approach to reducing Resistance and improving Agility in the Organisation is to measure the appropriate capabilities (Dynamics-Forces) & (Constructs – Building Blocks) and holistically present the relevant maturity levels, and provide guidance for development and improvement specific to each, while following the developmental learning process outlined by Dynamic Systems Maturity Theory DSMT.
Emotion is the feelings experienced by individuals and groups as a result of circumstances, mood and relationships in the organisation and it influences productive & unproductive behaviours.
Cognition is the mental action or process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through thought, experience, and the senses by individuals and in organisations the process of data & information capture, analysis, decision making and response by individuals and groups.
Leadership gives direction and confidence, and it represents the single most significant Dynamic in the Organizational System.
The benefits derived to individuals and teams for their contribution to the organisation. Reward Dynamic is the personal output of significant influence.
Physical experience of work is the most basic level of motivation influenced by the tangible assets of the organisation.
Culture is the collective equivalent of mindset and determines how the collective behave in recognised patterns.
Strategy involves setting goals, determining actions to achieve the goals, and mobilizing resources to execute the actions, often under conditions of uncertainty. A strategy describes how the ends (goals) will be achieved by the means (resources). Strategy Dynamic relates to where the org. is going, and how it is going to get there.
Management is the process and practice of forecasting, planning, organizing, commanding, coordinating, and controlling and activity, people and/or an organisation with a view to achieving a stated or desired outcome/Result.
A Maturity (Learning Level) Assessment can be easily configured on the OrgCMF™ Platform and participants invited to complete a short-targeted survey which automatically provides a scientific measurement of maturity and provides appropriate guidance. The depth of Assessment can be configured to be at ‘Triage’ level or ‘Diagnostic’ level, depending on each organisation’s context.
The above is the graphic presentation of the Dynamics identified in this paper relating to Resistance and Agility, in this example it is assumed all selected Dynamics were configured in the Assessment. Below is an example of the selected ‘Culture’ construct included. For the Assessment Dynamics’ & Constructs’ chosen.
For each Dynamic & Construct Measured there is a statement of behaviours and outcomes for the measured maturity level ‘Traits’. There is also guidance on appropriate action to be taken at that level to progress to the next maturity level.
The guidance provided in the on-line reports is based on the Developmental Learning Process that underpins Individual and Organisation Change. It directs the approriate action at where resistance should be reduced in the context of the overall system. This will build towards Agility following a structure and accepted natural system learning process, it will avoid skipping stages or actions beyond the learning capacity of the individual or organisation which would not gain traction or be sustainable.
In conclusion when focusing on reducing Resistance & Improving Agility, an organisations leadership should adopt the new knowledge to complement existing change process and models. The Organisation Capability Maturity Framework provides the information and tools to do this in a simple, effective and comprehensive manner and will improve the Change Process, Capability Maturity & Individual Performance because it is underpinned by Dynamic Systems Maturity Theory DSMT.