The first thing to do when there is a management change

New management must set the ground for a reformed company vision. Here are three steps to successful vision reformation, which must be as much an emotional exercise as it is an intellectual one

Bhavna Dalal
Updated: Jul 26, 2019 05:43:05 PM UTC
Image: Shutterstock

A change in an organisation at any level causes ripples, as though a stone skimmed across the water in a shimmering lake. When the stone hits the surface of the water, ripples form that widens its expanse. Whether it is a significant overhaul of the senior management, a merger or even a team-level change, the ripple effect is much higher than the original impact. The impact of the ripples varies, depending on where the change is taking place. The higher up the reorganisation, the more the ripples, hence it becomes imperative to manage it well.

One of the first things that new management must do when it takes the reins is ‘Vision Reformation’. In fact, in today's rapidly changing environment, this is a good practice to repeat once every three years even if the management remains the same.

A company stands on the foundation of its mission, vision and values. New people bring in a unique set of these three fundamentals. If there is a conflict with the existing paradigms, the path forward is bound to be shaky.

There are three things to keep in mind as you reform the vision:

The first step in the ‘Vision Reformation’ process is to review and revisit the existing vision. As part of the review process, ask many questions both individually and collectively around the principles. Does it excite all the members of the current team? Is it still relevant? Will it be relevant in the shorter and longer term? Does the rest of the organisation also believe in the vision? Are there parts of the vision that apply and others don’t? Identify them. At this step, don’t worry about the challenges you may face in the do-over. Staying objective and respectful to your own ambitions and desires is just as crucial as regarding those of the people that will be your partners and co-creators of the redesigned vision.

It is important to recall the ethos of the founding vision. The organisation has marinated in the older vision for many years. It has seeped into the processes and practices of the organisation. It would not serve the company well to discard previous ideas completely. Sometimes, a major revamp is needed, but even in those situations, there are always parts of the old that must be retained. Don’t take the value of the previous vision for granted. It is important to honour what has been done in the past.

After the first two steps have been accomplished, come together to reform the vision. The biggest mistake people make in setting the vision is that they look at it as an intellectual or a strategic exercise. It is not. Forming or reforming the vision is an emotional experience first. It is a dream for a company. While dreams may stem from reality, real innovators usually go after the unrealistic ideas. Your reformed vision will be a blend of reality and the future you dream for your company. The more unrealistic the ideas, the greater a visionary you are considered to be.

That said, it is essential to believe in the vision yourself. Only then can it be translated across the organisation and executed into the successful desired reality.

The author is founder and CEO of Talent Power Partners, a leadership development company based in Bengaluru, India.

The thoughts and opinions shared here are of the author.

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