Business Change Management

Business Change Management

Three Ways Corporate Anthropology Can Help Your Company Change

On Jun 8, 2022 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Corporate Anthropology, Managing change, Corporate Culture, anthropology, business change, business model innovation

                                                                                                 Photo courtesy www.business-anthro.com

What the heck is corporate anthropology?

People often ask us: "What do you do?" and "How do you do anthropology?" They are familiar  (maybe) with anthropologists who work in small-scale societies in far away lands. My response: I tell them that companies or organizations in more complex societies are like those small-scale societies. We observe their interconnected networks, and the way people get their jobs done every day. They have many of the same dynamics as tribal or hunter-gatherer societies. They also have different ones which reflect how they have evolved into effective, or dysfunctional, organizations. Our job as corporate anthropologists is to help them "see, feel and think" in new ways to sustain their growth during these fast-changing times.

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How To Avoid The Pandemic Recession

On Oct 8, 2020 2:46:11 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, business change management, business change

Recently there was an interesting article in The New York Times entitled, “The Pandemic Depression Is Over. The Pandemic Recession Has Just Begun.” So where does this leave us? It is safe to say that this is not the first time there has been major economic and social disruption in the history of this republic.

After WWII, we went from over-employment of women (during the war effort) to under-employment of this demographic group when returning veterans took back important jobs held by women. But those jobs (75-80 years ago) for the most part do not exist today as we move into the 4th industrial revolution. Over this time frame, we have moved from a heavy manufacturing economy to a technology and service industries economy.

A new economy requires new thinking and new agility

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No Time To Be Afraid Of This Blurry Future

On May 26, 2020 7:39:43 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, Managing change, business change, culture change expert

As we have been working with our clients during this pandemic, we're noticing a recurring theme. They are unhappy about not knowing what comes next. They've figured out how to deal with living at home, working at home and being at home. But now they're beginning to be uncomfortable and anxious about what's coming next. It's strange, isn't it, that without a clear vision of the future, it's often impossible to live today. I've recently recorded a podcast talking about this, which you can listen to here.

Martin Seligman's work on homo prospectus tells us a lot about how we need to see the future clearly if we're going to leave today...even if the future is an imagined one, because that's the way our brains work. Now the challenge is how to do our work when we're uncertain about what's going to be the new normal. What's more, we're not sure it's coming back to what it was. And we're not sure what it's going to be next.

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Surviving A Crisis: Trends Emerging Out Of COVID-19

On May 8, 2020 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, business strategy, business change management, business change

At Simon Associates Management Consultants (SAMC), we help organizations innovate and change. And as Blue Ocean Strategists®, it is critical that we understand where the world is today and where it is trending for tomorrow. We know that the rate of change is accelerating year after year. Coupled with this is the wrinkle of COVID-19 and how we deal with this pandemic.

But for me, personally, I don’t want to talk about the big mega trends. I want to talk about my world. How I am affected by this crisis. What I see as trends from my corner. Perhaps you have adapted or adopted some of these new trends for yourself. Take a look and perhaps comment or give me something from your perspective.

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Now That You Have Your Crisis, What Do You Change?

On Mar 18, 2020 9:39:26 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, Managing change, business change, culture change expert

We often tell our clients that if they need to reignite their business or change their market strategy or create a new business model, they should have a crisis or create one. Well, with the COVID-19 pandemic upon us, the crisis is here, and change is all around us. So what can you do individually and as a business to adapt?

First, don’t panic. Don’t be the proverbial deer in headlights. By being willing to change in big ways and small, you are doing something good to help others and protect yourself. It is ok.

Next, how do you help your folks respond so they too know it is ok? This is a time for exceptional, emotionally intelligent leadership. Keep it simple. You need to lead so others trust your judgments and want to follow you. No one knows exactly what to do right now, so it is a time to learn how to deal with an unknown crisis together.

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A 5 Step Checklist to Help Businesses Facing the "Value-Challenge"

On Feb 13, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: business strategy, business change, business model innovation, Human Development

As we work with clients or conduct workshops, we are finding a recurring frustration: CEOs who believe they sell "value" are losing bids over pricing issues. They are realizing that being a "value-add" solutions provider is not as valued as it used to be. And they're having to admit that if they can be easily replaced by another company's solutions at a lower price, what have they actually created? Something ephemeral? Not really of such great "value"? 

What is value anyway? And is your company's value at risk as business changes what it values? 

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Hate Change? Anthropology Can Make You and Your People Love It!

On Nov 23, 2018 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Culture Change, corporate anthropologist, business change

I often get calls from HR directors who say, "Help! I have a new CEO and he wants me to change the culture." And so I ask, "What's the problem?" And the HR person will say, "I don't really know what our culture is." And my answer to that is, "Well, what would the new CEO like it to become?" And they’ll say, "I'm not sure, but it isn't working so a new culture is what we need." Typically, they just want something different but they don't really know where they're going or how to get there. And they're not alone.

Many clients come to us because the times are changing and they know they have to adapt but they don't know how.

Change is something people hate. The brain hates it. The culture hates it. Organizations hate it. But as corporate anthropologists, we are convinced that what works—yes, really works—to successfully change an organization are the methods, tools and techniques of anthropology

Over and over again, we find that high-performing organizations thrive when they unleash the talent, passion and potential of their people. That has everything to do with building a better culture, and changing a culture for the better is what corporate anthropology is all about. 

To explain the kind of work we do at SAMC to help organizations change, I recently produced this webinar. It will help you understand the pain and challenges of change and why we just hate to do it. Then it will take you through the building blocks needed to change people. I'll touch on a few key concepts here in this blog but to get the full story, you really need to watch the webinar. Just click on the graphic below.
To read the full transcript of the webinar, click here.

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Change Might Be Exactly What Your Organization Needs To Be Successful

On Nov 15, 2018 6:34:51 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Culture Change, corporate anthropologist, business change

"Continuing to do what’s working is easy. What’s harder is to stop doing the things that aren’t working."

My thoughts exactly. In fact, in a recent Forbes article about how first-time CMOs need to focus on what to keep doing, start doing and sometimes more importantly, stop doing, I'm referenced as saying that just like individuals, fear, habit and hope can keep companies (even the most successful ones) from evolving. 

The article then mentions a previous Forbes blog of mine, "Why We're So Afraid of Change -- And Why That Holds Businesses Back," in which I discuss how so many businesses we work with at SAMC find themselves stuck, experiencing zero growth. The reason? (It's obvious to us but they can't see it.) In the midst of massive change all around them, they insist on using the same outmoded tactics to run their companies while wishing for the old world order to return. Good luck with that.

Beyond fearing change itself, many companies fail to see how the business environment itself is shifting.

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How Anthropology Unleashes Your Employees' Talent

On Oct 11, 2018 10:23:33 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, Corporate Culture, business change

As you may know, our mission at Simon Associates Management Consultants is to help organizations change. Whether it's a large high-performing organization or a mid-size owner/operator, helping businesses change is our focus and our specialty. It's exciting work!

But, change is something that people hate. The brain hates it. The culture hates it. We see this all the time with our clients. Most organizations have a hard time implementing new ideas and new ways of doing things, even if they are good ideas and better, more productive ways of doing things.

So, what to do? How can you successfully change your organization? As corporate anthropologists, we have found that what works over and over again is "a little anthropology." Watch this webinar and you'll learn why and how you can do it too.

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Why I Love Leading Vistage Workshops

On Jun 21, 2018 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Blue Ocean Strategy, business change

 

I just finished leading another CEO workshop for Vistage, the very highly-regarded executive coaching organization. This was one of Chris Noonan’s groups in Denver, and I think it was my 386th Vistage workshop conducted over the past 11 years.

Next year, I am going to reduce the number of Vistage engagements, for a number of reasons. Yet as I finished this one, I realized why Vistage has been so meaningful to me as someone who likes to share what I know with others and help them grow, personally and with their business. To bring you into the experience, I'd like to share some of the magic of the three hours the CEOs and I spent together in Denver.

Vistage members: eager to learn, explore, dig deep and grow

During Chris's typical introduction, he asks each business leader to tell me about their company, themselves and the hot stuff they are working on. These particular folks were much like other Vistage members but different from our clients at SAMC. They come to these monthly sessions with an eager interest in learning something they can apply to their business in some way to bring about big changes and meaningful growth. 

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