Here are some of the guidelines we follow when designing our organizational change management approach at Semco Style Institute USA: find your own unique style, learn from OUR mistakes, don’t try too hard to be teal, and be agile in the transformation.
Christian Wandeler·June 16, 2022·5 min read
Based on my academic knowledge and consulting experience in Morning Star, I decided to shape the consulting approach we have with our clients/partners at Semco Style Institute USA differently.
After taking Semco's Expert Certification Program (ECP) myself I understood that by doing things the Semco Way I could optimize my work by designing more symbiotic organizational culture changes and transitions so the leaders of the businesses I cooperate with could, at the same time, improve the employee experience throughout the whole process.
This said I decided to share with you some insights on how we rethink organizational change management at Semco Style Institute USA:
Find your own unique style
As an organizational psychologist, I get to see many unique organizations that nevertheless share some common patterns. At Semco Style, we help our partners and clients amplify their values and redesign their culture through a vast variety of different practices, tools, and little tricks.
There is no need to reinvent the wheel and bring down any internal processes that might be undergoing, but to adapt, recreate, choose and test what works best for each environment. The leaders and the organization are in charge of deciding what they believe is the desired destination.
Learn from our mistakes
Semco took over 20 years to develop the Semco Way. Semco was a living organizational lab. There were countless sessions of trial and error and we learned things the hard way. Nowadays, we guide others to learn from and with us.
This greatly accelerates organizational transformation, a usually quite lengthy process.
It does take time to create real organizational change, but with time and experience in designing different paths to achieve organizational success, Semco developed its own framework and roadmap. It is less of a linear process, but more like a maze for organizational change.
With this roadmap, we co-create where (or in which direction) organizations want and need to go, and, from then on, guide you in that process.
There are different ways to reach the same destination (call it teal if you wish), and relying on our own background experience, the Semco network of knowledgable experts, and Semco case studies, we at Semco Style are able to assist clients in the transformational process by giving you heads-up warnings about certain passages and supporting you when any problems or issues arise in the course of change.
To give you an example, if you are considering implementing self-set salaries, be aware that this practice should not be introduced at the start of the transformational process... WHY? This is just one of the common pitfalls that many organizations fall into and that, we at Semco, are quite aware of.
Don’t try too hard to be teal
What I mean by that is that we don’t try to be perfect. Oftentimes, people get very passionate about teal ideas, that they forget that it is actually a combination of different organizational cultures.
It might not even make sense to embrace all the methods from different organizations. Always ask yourself first if a particular practice is a good fit for your business.
At Semco, we do not advise or push organizations to go in many different directions. We motivate and support you in creating a culture that best suits the needs and demands of your people and your business. We work with the balance of respectfully challenging old habits and ways of thinking while also acknowledging the current tribal knowledge and history of the organization.
Be agile in the transformation
Transformation is complex. And you want to make sure you are adaptive and attentive to both the internal environment and the market needs.
Without a sound business, we don’t have an organization. So first of all we identify the business opportunities and the challenges. Afterward, we look at how this converges with the internal changes that are needed within the organization.
The change roadmap we initially design with you, helps us decide together the destination of the organization. However, there is always a need to make decisions on the go. This happens because of the need to prioritize and focus on what is really important at a specific moment in time. Like a ship in the water, you can’t always predict the storms and control when and how the sea will change.
E.g. One of our clients had COVID-related supply chain issues. We immediately adjusted our plan (or change journey) and focused the internal transformation to prioritize business needs, while ensuring that all operations were aligned with the overall cultural change goal (destination).
At SSI USA, we also believe there is no perfect way to drive culture change and that every roadmap should be specifically tailored to every organization and designed with the input of the whole workforce. We cooperate with human-centric companies or those who understand that their people are their most valuable asset and the real driving force in the business.
We thrive together with organizations that go beyond clichés and the future of work whitewashing to really make work awesome.
If you trust that you are one of these businesses and wish to go one step further in your journey, feel free to reach out.