Scott K. Thompson, CEO
According to historical data, 95 percent of all large-scale projects are technically sound. However, more than 65 percent of these technically sound projects fail to meet their long-term return on investment (ROI) goals. That’s because, without an understanding of how organizations react to change, it proves extremely difficult to lead an organization through these projects in ways that effectively increase engagement and manage stakeholder expectations. Often, leaders don’t understand the significance of their role and amount of effort necessary to manage organizational reactions to transformational change.
However, change itself isn’t typically the stumbling block in these unsuccessful initiatives. Change is common, natural, even inevitable. Yet, successfully navigating transformational change remains a lofty, sometimes insurmountable, challenge for many organizations that don’t fundamentally understand how to navigate this process.
Most initiatives begin with a fundamental assumption that everyone involved shares the same vision, goals, and attitudes. That premise is flawed at best because it underestimates cultural considerations and resistance to change. Because of this, these initiatives don’t result in positive, sustainable outcomes. Additionally, many of today’s organizations aim for budget cuts, operational efficiency improvements, and competitiveness but may not consider the effects on employee morale and company culture. This can equate to seemingly endless restructuring and even more change fatigue or friction for those closest to the change.
A company that is on the leading edge of eliminating this status quo approach is DuraBante. They understand not only how change occurs but also how people within an organization react to change. This makes DuraBante a strong partner for organizations looking to create a real and sustainable difference through their business initiatives. Their team of client centric experts work with leadership from the onset of transformation to prepare them for what is on the horizon. “As a management consulting firm, we focus on transformational change. Because of this, we’ve been able to increase the adoption rate of change initiatives effectively up to 90 percent,” says Scott K. Thompson, founder and CEO of DuraBante.
A New Solution to an Age-Old Problem
After driving successful transformational projects for the last 20-plus years, Thompson explains why even though conventional initiatives are lengthy, in the long-term, over 65 percent of these initiatives don’t achieve their intended ROI. He says, “Understanding how organizations react to change is imperative to the long-term adoption and the ROI.” DuraBante has created a model, shown below, that presents how organizations react to change over time. Understanding and then managing the transformation through each phase of the model is critical to the success and sustainability of the initiative. There are two particularly important differences in how DuraBante approaches business management consulting compared to typical approaches that focus only on change management.
What are these differences?
First, DuraBante teaches leaders how to guide their organization during the period where friction rises most intensely, and productivity is decreasing (shown by the red bar in the model). To the inexperienced eye, it can look like the organization is falling apart here. However, this is normal and, if understood by leadership, can be managed.
Many companies are versed in change management. However, what differentiates DuraBante is their keen understanding of how organizations react to change. Our team of experienced consultants partners with our clients assisting them through this change
If not, and leadership reacts poorly, even pulling back on the transformation, causing more skepticism among stakeholders: those involved and affected by the change.
Second, critical focus for DuraBante is the inflection point. This point is crucial to the achievement of the desired change state. At this point, the key stakeholders, especially those who took longer to accept the coming changes, are starting to understand that the change is real. They are also realizing what their role will look like in the organization moving forward. Without this realization, these stakeholders never fully buy into the ultimate change state.
With services such as business process re-engineering, procedure program development, and training and mentoring, DuraBante helps organizations mitigate employee frustrations during the change process while ensuring they meet current and long-term strategic business goals more smoothly. “Our ability to understand each business’s complex and unique requirements puts it leagues above any other typical management consulting company. Rather than just change management, our core competencies are really around process, procedure, and training—which drive the change,” says Thompson.
To this end, DuraBante performs an assessment to analyze their clients’ current-state, organizational cultures, where resistance to and early adoption of change may come from, and more. “As we work with Fortune 500 companies as well as Federal Government agencies, our analysis is extremely comprehensive,” says Thompson. Based on the data, DuraBante layers a series of personalized, phased-in approaches for initiating projects. “What differentiates us is our ability to understand how organizations react to change and then incorporate that through everything we do,” says Thompson.
One example Thompson shares is a client that faced a license-based compliancy issue that could have shut off their revenue streams and resulted in significant fines. The client had seasoned technicians who were initially resistant to the change initiative because it seemed as if they were being told they didn’t know how to do their jobs. Instead of making it a top-down push, DuraBante partnered directly with the technicians and front-line operators. Over time, the technicians went from heavy resistance to instead asking for even more procedures and clarity on compliance. In less than a year, DuraBante moved the needle from resistance to acceptance and saved the client millions of dollars in fines.
It is DuraBante’s deep understanding of how organizations react to change and its impact on organizational effectiveness that bring about such success stories across a wide spectrum of clients. Additionally, as DuraBante is a service-disabled veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB), its team consists of experienced military and industry professionals from diverse backgrounds, and their well-rounded perspectives provide a foundation for growth. These seasoned professionals are highly vested in going the extra mile for their clients and their co-workers. “An important part of our growth is hiring the right people, creating the right culture, and establishing a good relationship with our clients,” says Thompson. Due to their commitment and zeal, DuraBante has tripled in size in the last 18 months, and the company expects significant growth in the upcoming 24-36 months.