Futur Zwo

Herbert von Kaufmann

Strategy & Transformation

successfully transform organisations

Problem Statement

Interconnectedness, complexity and permanent dynamism are the prevailing patterns of today's world. Recent developments in AI as well as significantly changing expectations of society, customers and employees require a rethinking and sharpening of mission statements and a changed strategic positioning.

Disruptive changes in entire industries and markets are also forcing significant changes in the business and operational model, e.g. platforms and network organisation.

With a formulated mission statement and defined strategy, the first question that immediately emerges is then:

How can one successfully transform an organisation in alignment with mission statement and strategy from todays state to tomorrows desired state, and what should the target state look like?

Organising the transformation of the organisation simply as the implementation of a mission statement and strategy will fall short.

Extensive transformations are associated with an order transition of the organisation and require a systemic overall understanding in order to

  1. establish systemic procedural and cultural changes in the target system that are necessary for sustainable success,
  2. successfully manage the transition to the desired target state, and thus overall
  3. achieve the goals formulated in the strategy.
  • what are helpful and less helpful patterns in the organisation?
  • how do we want to work and lead together in the future?
  • is there a need for a different, organisational awareness of patterns, communication and conflicts and how to deal with them?
  • Where do we stand on subjects such as error culture or, better, learning culture?
  • what is good today, what gives us stability and confidence?
  • have we sufficiently addressed the history and state of the organisation, do we have an adequate "face reality"?
  • how do we organise the transition already in a mode that corresponds to the target state of transformation?

To avoid the Tortoise and the Hare dilemma

"We are still in transformation, but the future is always already here, and it's different than we expected"

an organisation has to address the following:

How and where in the organisation do we need more agility, increased responsiveness and better internal and external senses?

Why is that? Because time plays a role and because we are always dealing with imponderables:

  • (mostly) external factors that cannot be influenced - changes the external over time until the planned achievement of a target cannot be calculated with certainty (market, competitors, customers, regulations, resources, etc.).
  • external factors we have an impact on - we cannot say for sure how the market will respond to our change or even change itself as a result of a changed set-up
  • internal dynamics - we do not know for sure which dynamics will arise where and when along the way, and whether solutions will succeed as planned or even be goal-oriented solutions at all. The organisation will learn in the implementation process, and other insights and solutions may emerge. Likewise, cultural change takes time and cannot be prescribed or planned, but must be lived and experienced

And, last but not least, that a sharpening or further development of the mission statement and strategy is needed usually only becomes clear when the organisation is dealing with the transformation itself, because the following question arises:

Are the mission statement and strategy sufficiently and appropriately formulated for such a transformation?

Sufficient and appropriate in that the mission statement is differentiating, emotionalising and the strategy is action-guiding enough to serve as a compass for transformation.

The interaction at a glance:

And finally, the basic attitude and the degrees of freedom need to be clarified:

  • how ambitious are we?
  • are we (by necessity) problem-oriented and/or opportunity- and design-oriented?
  • do we orient ourselves more towards the competitors (reaction mode) or/ and do we want to go our own way?
  • is there any red tape, are there fixed guard rails in the existing business and operating model, or do we want to/can we think more comprehensively?

My Services

  • Accompanying the development/revision of the mission statement and strategy - managing the process, design and facilitation of workshops, critical review of the current status, support in sharpening the mission statement and strategy, involvement of relevant bodies and stakeholders
  • Accompanying the development/revision of the transformation of the organisation - steering the process, design and facilitation of workshops, critical review of current status, use of the Wegekompass® as a framework and orientation instrument (see below)
  • Accompanying strategic alignment and transformation of individual teams and business units
  • Support in identifying systemic structural and cultural fields of action and necessary lines of development at the overall or team level

The Wegekompass® as a core Framework

Of course, there are a number of suitable models for designing transformation projects.

A very suitable, contemporary framework for working out the transformation (Questions 1, 2 and 3 within the Problem Statement) is, in my view, the path compass of the systemic consultancy Andy Duke GmbH, based on decades of experience with large transformation projects with the most diverse organisations.

The term Wegekompass is a registered trademark and legally protected. The trademark owner is systemic consulting Andy Duke GmbH.

The design is in the foreground, releasing energies and generating positive emotions for the path and the goal, thus building a positive arc of tension.

An intensive examination of the mission statement and strategy takes place, the view is freed up for previous patterns of thought and action in the organisation, and for what makes the organisation tick. This examination alone leads to changes in the organisation. 

Working with the route compass also provides necessary clarity and insight, because:

  • an undistorted and seamless “face Reality” the facts and the strengths and weaknesses is needed, which is not always desired on the part of those responsible or stakeholders
  • the strategy does not float freely, there is a history (successes and failures, historically based fears), a DNA, a way of "doing things here"
  • a suitable process and a good setting is needed (who and which levels are involved, how different are the characters, is there enough space and time, which culture of conflict, decision-making and communication do we have, etc.)
  • the relevant data, the analytical competence, and, if necessary, external impulses are needed

The framework forms the framework and provides orientation in the process; specific tools can then be used for individual questions, such as Simon Sinek's Golden Circle, SWOT analyses, classic market and competition analyses, a Business Model Canvas, the Digital Maturity Level etc.

My expertise in relevance to the topic

25 years of experience in project management of complex, company-wide or cross-company projects, from IT and ERP migration and implementation projects in the early years, to M&A and strategy projects and company-wide transformation processes. X-functional, X-business & IT, international, extensive group experience, impact at all levels

  • Many years of expertise in strategy and organisational consulting (among others, with PwC, IBM and KPMG)
  • Long-term management of an Executive Board unit "Strategic Projects" at MLP Finanzberatung, successful introduction of an open and innovative process in client consulting via a multi-stage and multi-year company-wide transformation process
  • Extensive experience with project management (simple to X-functional and complex, merger and post-merger, with or without external participation) and the need for information and control at all levels of an organisation
  • Extensive expertise with transformation processes in organisations also from a systemic process perspective
  • experienced and licensed in the use of the Andy Duke Wegekompass® for organisational transformation

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