Published November 15, 2021
Why Collaboration is at the Heart of Meaningful Change
Transformation. Change. Strategy…..Every business that exists will have likely uttered these words more times in the past 18 months than ever before.
There is no denying that world issues have catapulted the majority of organisations into a frenzy of obligation to impact change. The pandemic accelerated digital transformation for many and forced IT and IT security departments to evaluate their entire roadmap and strategy.
The boardroom has also been placed firmly in the spotlight as decisions around climate change and the reduction of a carbon footprint have been placed under scrutiny. Digital and marketing leaders are striving to adapt to a digital-first world and maintain engagement with their customers….and the finance department…well, they are doing what they always have – trying to calculate how all the above challenges and more will impact the bottom line.
One thing has become drastically clear. No man is an island, and meaningful change on key issues will not be impacted by one department or one leader alone.
We recently spoke to CDIO for London Business School, Danny Attias on the subject of sustainability, and how technology leaders can act as a pioneer for change.
Speaking about how any technology business leader could make an impact, Danny said:
“Partner up with the finance director” when speaking about how to effect change, because ultimately no-one can ignore “an impact on the bottom line”.
When speaking about collaboration Danny noted that although we all might approach a challenge from a different perspective, “the end result is the same”.
For change to be successful, a culture of continuous improvement and accountability must be at the heart. The entire workforce must be behind the concept of change-from employees to senior stakeholders. The initial focus must be on organisational buy-in, rather than jumping straight to a fixed template or methodology for change.
Chris Hallam, Charity Chair & CEO of CH Coaching Solutions highlights the necessity of understanding “the culture they have, versus the culture they need” when recognising that human to human transformation is ultimately derived from culture.
In order to make a difference, change must be adopted by the masses, and not just from one leader or dedicated taskforce alone, and this mindset needs to be embedded across the entire business and initiated from a collaborative culture.
It is also important to recognise that although collaboration is important, business leaders must not forget to lead from the front, and make their intentions visible. A strong leader must be able to offer a clear sense of direction and be a visible role model for the change they want to see but remain open to ideas and input from their team.
Strong ideas come from a team with strong leadership networks that encourage positivity and continuous learning. Investment into effective learning and development will also play a key role and will support the values of ownership.
Collaboration in its true essence only exists if individuals feel a sense of accountability. The feeling of involvement, responsibility and care relies heavily on the values and culture that originate from the business- and the leaders themselves.
If organisations are going to effectively impact and conduct change to tackle the pressing issues facing our society today, then creating a collaborative environment that enables individuals, organisations and society to thrive, is the first place we need to start.