Following up from, and building, on last week’s ‘Thought of the Week’ about multi-modal working – a word that seems to be on most IT leaders’ minds currently is `transformation`. It’s being used so often that it’s in danger of being over-used, and in most cases not describing the required means or the end.
Transformation means big change, important change, and something at the end that’s very different to the start. This requires planning, strong and consistent executive level commitment, and a realisation that it might get tough. However, the outcome will be worth it.
So why is the word transformation being used when the activities and outcomes aren’t transformational, or even providing visible business benefits? `Process transformation`, can often be translated as process documents being drafted, used in a specific team or area, but not properly embedded into and used across all relevant parts of an organisation. `Agile transformation` often means that certain agile activities are being used and followed, but not in a structured way, and only by certain teams.
Instead of transformation, Incremental change seems like a better description. With any incremental change or improvement, it’s important to make sure that this is clearly thought out and part of a bigger plan. Making unstructured changes in isolation, and without considering the bigger picture, can lead to confusion, gaps in processes and knowledge, re-work, and the customer not getting what they really need.
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