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Culture May Be Your Number One Obstacle — Does Your Team Embrace Change or Fear It?

By Jodie Korber on 22/03/18 9:43 AM

The importance of culture within a company is certainly not a new idea. In fact, it has the potential to affect nearly every aspect of your organisation, both positively and negatively, at a moment's notice. Take turnover rate for example. One Columbia University study shows that the turnover rate at companies with a strong culture is just 13.9% versus the 48.4% at companies without one. 

Productivity is also directly affected, as the Department of Economics at the University of Warwick discovered that happy, engaged workers are 12% more productive than average employees, while those who are unhappy and disconnected are actually 10% less productive.

But it's important to understand that your company culture can be a technically strong one and still have the potential to affect your organisation in negative ways. Case in point: if you feel like your road to essential digital transformation has been a rocky one, the culture you've built is likely your number one obstacle whether you realise it or not.

 

Your Culture Is a Reflection

Digital transformation doesn't just rely on a willingness to change, it requires it. But if your teams don't embrace change or innovation and instead fear them, your IT infrastructure will quickly grow stagnant dragging your business along with it.

On another hand, this type of change is naturally scary; after all, something as far-reaching as digital transformation often has immediate and dramatic ramifications on the jobs your employees are doing on a daily basis. Yet at the same time, it's also exciting — or at least, that's how people should see it. This is something that you're all going through together, and it's something that will make everyone stronger both individually and as a unit.

Never forget that if you truly want to improve performance and empower growth, you need what only IT can offer you. To achieve this, you need employees who are willing to embrace technology, and understand the need for it enough to support it rather than run from it. 

You need to be able to move your entire company from the former perspective to the latter as soon as you can and doing so will require you to keep a few key things in mind.

 

The Art of the Change Culture

To turn your company's culture from your number one obstacle into your top asset, you need to start by building a "change culture" in the first place. You need to have a vision for what your IT infrastructure looks like and what it can do for your organisation. Utilise collaborative comms to your advantage.

Share that vision far and wide and make sure that people know not just what you want to do but why you want to do it. Make them see what's in it for them and how it will allow them to do better work, spend less time focusing on administrative tasks, and be able to genuinely improve their lives each day.

But more than that, remember that one of the major reasons people fear change in the first place is because disruption has become something of a dirty word. It shouldn't be. Break your vision down into a series of smaller, more manageable chunks. Keep it simple, yet strategic. You're not trying to accomplish one goal with digital transformation, you're trying to accomplish many smaller ones.

At that point, the process itself becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Not only is it personal to your team, but every time one of your smaller tasks is checked off the list, the gratification that people get will generate its own momentum and will carry you all farther down the line towards completion. 

 

Be the Change You Want to See

There are a number of additional steps that you can take to help make this transition as easy as possible. Many companies choose to partner with a managed service provider or MSP during this time. Not only can they help create a custom IT architecture to meet the specific needs of your business, they can also train employees on how to effectively engage with this new setup.

As the old saying goes, "nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood." An MSP can be an invaluable partner in terms of transforming a stagnant company culture that shies away from IT disruption into one that embraces the innovation and integration that it affords. 

Another key step that you can take involves looking for opportunities that you can integrate in many other different ways, too. For example, you can create an extensive internal tech setup (your MSP can also help you with this) built on the foundation of Microsoft's Enterprise offerings. Show your employees that solutions like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and others are all powerful individually, but they're even more important when taken together.

In a lot of ways, Microsoft's Enterprise is a perfect metaphor for everything that you're trying to accomplish in the first place. If you can get them to buy into this smaller idea, which involves equipping them with the right infrastructure and right skills, you can get them to buy into anything.

At that point, a culture that embraces change is no longer a question of ‘if but ‘when’.

 

Lanrex: Your Digital Transformation Partner

At Lanrex, we understand that technology is ultimately just a platform. What you choose to build with that platform is up to you, but investing in the latest in modern technology purely for the sake of it is never the way to guarantee the outcomes you need when you need them the most.

Only by approaching IT as a foundation from which to build something stronger and ultimately much more powerful, and by empowering your team to embrace digital change instead of fearing it, will you be able to create the genuine results you need moving forward.

To find out  more information about why culture may be your number one obstacle on the road to digital transformation, or to get more information about how to embrace change in general, contact Lanrex today.