What is Business Transformation?
Although John Lennon wasn’t much of a businessman, I think that he nailed the concept of transformation with his famous quote:
“Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.”
A Capacity for Change
Lennon was more of a life strategist than a business strategist. He realized that you can’t control life, but you can learn to be in charge of your response to whatever life throws at you. Learning to be in charge of your response to whatever business life throws at you is a bandwidth issue, a capacity issue.
If you have learned how to successfully navigate the ups and downs that life throws at you, the stuff that you weren’t anticipating but you were able to handle when the going got wild – then it could be said that you have a big bandwidth, a big capacity for change.
Watch for the Curve Ball
If the conditions within your business promoted capacity building while at the same time providing a solid work environment that provided the right structure, processes and resources to get the job done, regardless of the external craziness – you should be able to transform the business in response to whatever life threw at it.
Conditions and Capacity
The right conditions and capacity provide people with the right resources and processes to be able to transform the business on-the-fly, to accommodate, adapt, innovate, create and deliver, regardless of whatever transformational change was thrown at it.
Transformational change is the name that has been given to the type of change that is triggered by events beyond our control. Business transformation, therefore, is the notion that business can transform itself to remain relevant and on-strategy, regardless of what the world throws at it.
The concept of responsiveness, adaptability, innovation, creativity and “being” in-flow are central to business transformation. While these concepts have been central to a life in the arts, as Mr. Lennon reminded us; they have only recently been included as central to business life.
Thanks to the global changes that the 2008 big recession ushered in, business academics, economists and world leaders are having to step back from their scientific approach to business and consider that maybe, art and science, in combination with one another, hold the secrets to future business success and therefore life success.
From this new transformed vantage point it becomes much easier to conclude that business, as a distinct entity, doesn’t change – people change. Businesses don’t transform, the people inside those business transform the business.
People Define Business
Business transformation, therefore, is an inside/out process starting and ending with the people that define the business. Transformation takes place one person at a time, starting with self, the team and your customers.
A lot of people are talking about business transformation, but not very many are walking the talk. Business transformation is not easy, in fact, it’s the equivalent of herding cats.
You may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one.