Insights from Gary Hamel from the World Business Forum (Sydney)

Gary Hamel, visiting Professor of Strategic and International Management at London Business School, electrified the World Business Forum audience with his new and radical vision of change management and how companies can restructure.

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Thinking differently about change and culture

Gary Hamel, visiting Professor of Strategic and International Management at London Business School, electrified the World Business Forum audience with his new and radical vision of change management and how companies can restructure.

One of the most profound paradigm shifts we are facing is how we organise human beings – this will unleash a torrent of latent human capability if we face the most fundamental business challenge of our time: how do you thrive as an organisation where change is relentless and the future is less and less an extrapolation of the past.

The world is becoming more turbulent faster than organisations are becoming more resilient. It’s the insurgent creating the new opportunities – we expect newcomers to create new industries and products despite the incumbents having the resource advantages.

‘Change management’ implies only some have the right to change things but by the time the CEO recognizes the need to change it’s often too late. It also implies change is episodic or highly programmatic – but it’s often spontaneous, reflexive and continuous.

To inoculate yourself against irrelevance and build an evolutionary advantage you need to abandon traditional ways of thinking about change management. The single biggest barrier to timely adaptation is organisational architecture that places too much authority in the hands of people with most of their emotional equity in the past. This happens when leadership teams fail to write off their depreciating intellectual capital.

A really innovative company enables employees to write their own mission statement, empowers employees to choose leaders, has peer-to-peer management, gives frontline discretionary authority to issue purchase orders, has responsibilities but not ‘jobs’, opportunities not promotion and compensation through peer review.

Read more insights from the 2014 World Business Forum keynote speakers.  http://business.nab.com.au/tag/world-business-forum/>

NAB was recently privileged to sponsor the World Business Forum in Sydney – two days of inspiration, collaboration and provocation by some of the world’s leading business innovators. These insights were generated live on the day by NAB and were informed by the guest speakers’ presentations.