Back to the Future State
When it comes to organizational change, it is no secret that companies struggle to move beyond the constraints of their current environment. After all, companies rarely begin projects with a clean slate. Embedded policies, procedures and traditions not only make it difficult for a company to change, they make it hard for stakeholders to think constructively and creatively when designing future state processes or capabilities.
Often a company stands to benefit by bringing in an objective party that can facilitate, guide, and partner with stakeholders to move beyond current thinking and develop a solution that meets the needs of the organization. While effective change is strengthened by an understanding of the past, the most effective solutions rely on agile and innovative forward thinking. For this reason, NEOS and our clients looking to redesign their organizational process do something a bit out of the ordinary. We time travel into the Future…for a week that is.
In a NEOS FutureWeek, stakeholders participate in an interactive workshop that streamlines process redesign and highlights the most valuable next steps for the organization to achieve its strategy. There may not be a hover board or a time machine but below are just a few of the components that make FutureWeek just as revolutionary:
- Core organizational strengths are preserved. In preparation for FutureWeek, NEOS partakes in a combination of current state observation and analysis to provide a foundational understanding of organizational activities, strengths, and weaknesses. This research provides background knowledge on the core business assets that make the company successful and ensures that these strengths are retained in the future state, while weaknesses are addressed.
- Desired capabilities are documented. It is all too easy to get caught up in the logistics of a project. For this reason, FutureWeek focuses on capturing WHAT actions you want to happen in your organization, rather than HOW you want them to be done. This is an important distinction that allows further separation from the current state way of doing things. Organizational leadership often misses the mark on thinking outside of their current constraints, limiting themselves to build a future eerily similar to the present. Workshop attendees design and document future state capabilities that address what they will need to be done, instead of how it can be done currently.
- Key voices are heard. A car manufacturer would not design a car without speaking to car drivers. Why would a company build a future state process without speaking to the impacted stakeholders? FutureWeek leverages this knowledge that without a broad understanding of user feedback and input, organizational change will be unsuccessful. The workshop engages a wide range of people with experience in varying roles and ranks of the organization. Why is this so valuable? This ensures you are aware of the future you want to develop, not just from a management perspective but from a broad, company-wide perspective.
- Impacts are accounted for. NEOS understands that when you change one process the effects will continue to ripple through the organization. Accounting for interdependencies that exist across people, process and technology is necessary for ensuring a successful transformation.
- Change is empowering, rather than intimidating. Last, but not least, attendees of FutureWeek are a part of an exciting and mind-altering experience. They are encouraged to think creatively about the work they do each day, and provide feedback on how change can be beneficial to them individually and to the organization. In other words, stakeholders from a range of roles and levels are empowered to design their own future. And even more, they are able to return to the present and ensure their fellow stakeholders to feel confident in the decisions being made going forward.
While planning for the future can often seem like a guessing game, FutureWeek workshops ensure that redesign efforts occur rapidly and produce deliverables that represent the needs and desires of a cross-functional group of stakeholders. Companies across a wide range of industries have experienced this ground-breaking experience at FutureWeek and are beginning to rethink how they deliver value and accelerate their competitive advantage.