Here is a quick pre-litmus test to help us understand the success possibility for any strategical implementation. It is widely applicable from product development to HR policies, from marketing campaigns to personal life. Not to forget, exceptions do exists and this posts doesn’t address the exceptional cases, rightly so.
- No follow up plans: Any strategical implementation which doesn’t include a follow up plan will most probably fail, as after implementation some parts may need a pruning. Sometimes the whole plan may need a revamp and a delay can do catastrophic damage. A follow up plan needs allocation of resources for required period. Depending on the investment and the importance of the implementation, the follow up plan should be given priority and resources over other visible tasks.
- When a website goes for a complete revamp, Google analytics becomes our best friend. The company that does the changes without allocating enough resources for a follow up might not see the true benefit. When Google decided to show 30 results per page the traffic went down by 20%, a follow up plan ensured the user satisfaction, they rolled back to 10 results per page.
- Implementation of new HR policies without a follow up plan can create internal (hidden at surface level) dissatisfaction generating negative energy zones in a company. Company should allocate resources for follow up plans with the implementation to avoid such negative zones.
- A major product launch without a follow up plan can fail in spite of of its great features. I wonder whether amazon’s mechanical turk had a follow up plan, now it is full of spam. They should have tried making it free review (using significance factor) or doing something different.
- The Perception of Unfairness – Communicate – Being perceived as bad is equivalent to being bad, as good and bad is just a perceived feeling. So it is very important to communicate your vision in simpler terms. Example: A company changing its flexible timing to more fixed timing can create dissatisfaction but once the purpose is clearly stated, the dissatisfaction level can be lowered. Sometimes even a good move is perceived as bad, ERP implementation is one such example. After every ERP implementation companies spend a good portion of money on change management, educating people about the changes and its benefits with their new role.
- Approach can make all difference – Mary Poppendieck’s Team Compensation is a great example of right approach where she involved the team in discussion instead of going by the traditional compensation way. It is the approach that made the difference. Remember satisfaction is just a perception. Sometimes people are satisfied with less if it is done through right approach. A right approach can make wrong right and vice-versa a wrong approach can make right wrong.
- Trust factor – Trust factor (in terms of product we call it brand factor) plays an important role. This needs to be build with time. For a trusted HR dept, implementation becomes easy as people accepts it trusting the dept. Also the openness in the system keeps the improvement cycle active. Its an attitude based implementation.
There are more things but I am keeping it short. If I have to choose one of the above, I will choose the follow up plan over anything as it will ensure other.