Ideas for Successful Business Change

Critical Success Factors for successful transformation.

Harvard Professor Kotter examined 100 transformations.  He identified eight activities which need to be completed - broadly sequential – to ensure success.  These can be summarised as follows:

  1. Establish a sense of urgency (Starting point): Examine company situation. Identify major threats or opportunities. Communicate this information to others in ways to get attention and pave the way for winning co-operation

  2. Form a powerful guiding coalition: Build group with power to lead change and help group work together as team

  3. Create a vision: Create picture of future that can be communicated easily to shareholders and help direct the change exercise

  4. Communicate the vision: Use every means possible to communicate the new vision and strategies for change, and to capture the hearts and minds of the people within the organisation who must be convinced of the value of change. Communication includes acting as a role model and teaching new behaviours by example

  5. Empower others to act on the vision: This includes helping others to understand how they can take action to achieve the change and encouraging them to move forward. It can include amending systems or structures that provide obstacles to change

  6. Create short-term wins: Plan and achieve visible improvements in performance and reward people who achieve the improvements

  7. Consolidate and build: Use the credibility created by the short-term gains to make further changes to systems, structures and policies that are creating obstacles. Don’t celebrate victory too soon - this will reduce motivation quickly and the change effort may fizzle out. Find new specific projects and new targets to add novelty and energy to the process

  8. Institutionalise the new approach: Build the new approaches into the basic systems, structures and culture of the organization

Kotter’s eight activities are mapped below against the Exalt Management Consulting’s framework of Profitable Growth:



Three “so what” comments for those leading business change:

  1. As an ambitious leader looking for a step change in profitable growth, check your plan against our equation:


    Strategy” + “Leadership” + “Planning” + “Operating Model Change”


    “Successful Transformation” + “Value Delivered”

  2. Examine your planned approach against each of the four quadrants.  Critically evaluate the sequence with which you are advancing your programme.  Ensure that you are building a foundation firm enough to deliver a lasting step change in performance.

  3. Exalt Management Consulting’s experience includes all activities required for successful transformation.  Exalt Management Consulting is keen to partner with you to help you deliver a successful transformation of great value.  Our expertise in “Strategy” + “Leadership” + “Planning” + “Operating Model Change”  will enable you to focus on delivering value and success for your company and shareholders.

Contact us now by phone on +44 1727 762 320 or email here