eSCRIBE knows that change is difficult – that’s why we are committed to helping companies that are contemplating change, in the mire of change or driving change in the way they manage meetings. We’ve seen companies drop anchor in “the way we’ve always done things”, standing steadfast with outdated processes and procedures. It takes courage to initiate change, but inevitably the positive effects overshadow the loss of the familiar. In this blog, we’ll take a look at the critical success factors that make up R.O.C.K. S.T.A.R. But first, let’s set the context, guided by some well-known rock songs.
Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes (Turn and Face the Strange) Bowie, 1972
Automated meetings translate into vast savings of money, time and paper – that is an undisputed fact. Still, the mindset and the cultural shift required for successful implementation of change can be daunting. Despite frustrating inefficiencies, rescheduling hassles, collating agendas and expensive admin costs, many organizations still resist the benefits of automated meetings. That’s why we begin every implementation with a broad and fruitful discussion on change management. Every organization is the same but different when it comes to resistance and adoption of change. Ultimately, though, the organizations all must acknowledge that the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change, and that prompts the necessary willingness.
You Can’t Always Get What You Want – Stones, 1969
We see organizations struggle with the meeting-centric aspect of automated meetings as compared to the traditional way of doing things. There is a comfortable familiarity in producing and distributing agendas, reports and minutes, and changes to these procedures, even if slight, can be challenging. Interestingly, some of the individuals who are most resistant eventually become the best advocates. But not until they accept that change means change – that the way of running a meeting may be different and foreign initially, but that once invested in the process, it is the best go-forward plan…and they never look back. (Except to ask why they didn’t do this sooner.)
Come Together – Beatles, 1969
As consultants to government, business and healthcare sectors, we have learned a few critical make-or-break factors to success over the years; those things that help, those that hinder, the bricks and speed bumps on the path to success.
Following these critical success factors guarantees a smooth transition to automated meeting management. Here they are (think ROCK STAR):
|Resource Availability||Subject matter experts will have to be available as required throughout the project. While the time commitments are not onerous, some effort will be required from the Clerk’s staff (Clerk and project team) and the ITS.|
|Openness to Change||An open mind produces a willingness to accept the inevitable changes in workflow and business process changes. Generally, these changes are modest but can seem larger than they are if resistance persists.|
|Courage and Commitment in the culture||The clerk’s team, working with identified stakeholders across the organization, should be the evangelists for the new system, revealing the courageous and necessary cultural adoption to change.|
|Knowledge is Power||Knowledge is power which breeds confidence that cascades into a winning attitude throughout the organization.|
|Support business groups||Support business groups act as an easy first ‘win’. A business group with report management and workflow that has managed to adopt to the new process is used as an example to others. When one group succeeds and has a positive experience, others readily adopt.|
|Training||Sufficient resources must be applied to training so people will quickly become comfortable with the new process.|
|Approach incrementally||The process is better understood and experienced with a number of small but important wins. Trying to “boil the ocean” never works. Identify key meeting streams and business group – roll out meeting automation to them and then build on that success.|
|Reassurance||eSCRIBE’s Post Go Live support is well received, as the client goes live with the initial meeting. We offer a dedicated technician to provide friendly, client aware support or “hand holding” during the first few meeting cycles.|
Satisfaction – Stones, 1965 Keith Richards wrote a best-selling book called “Life”. He knows a thing or two about ‘satisfaction’, and in the book he talks about his career, writing music, the industry and the many changes he’s seen over the decades. Of music he says, “Good music comes out of people playing together, knowing what they want to do and going for it. You have to sweat over it and bug it to death.” Organizations, businesses and municipal councils are no different – everyone is trying to be productive, get things done, move forward… in other words, bug it to death. Of moving towards change and the resistance to change, Keith says, “If I’ve come to any conclusion after many, many years of not knowing what the hell I’m doing, it’s to just do it.” Luckily for organizations in all sectors, managing change through automated meetings is something eSCRIBE does very, very well – they produce Rock Stars.
See how City of Burlington drove their changes to achieve a more efficient and transparent government.