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3 Tips to Inspire Lasting Culture Change

If you’ve ever taken on a major, company-wide initiative—like, say, adapting your legacy systems to a cloud-based platform—then you know company buy-in is essential to the adoption process. Alternatively, if you don’t have that team buy-in, it can result in frustrated employees, resource inefficiency, and even major consumption costs.

3 Tips to Inspire Lasting Culture Change

So, how can you ensure your organization is ready for modernization? By making it intrinsic to your company’s culture. While this process is not as simple as it may sound, read on for three tips to make the process easier at your organization.

1. Craft an Organizational Change Management Program

To start, you’ll need a robust organizational change management program to help you overcome potential cultural challenges. This step is mission-critical no matter what your end goal may be. Here’s a general outline of what your change management program should consist of:

Take it from the top

Strong leadership can make or break any initiative, which is why it’s vital to get buy-in from your leadership team—starting with the C-suite executives down to any other leaders who are well known and admired across the organization.

By embracing process changes and laying the essential groundwork, these trusted leaders can advocate for process improvements, educate team members on the benefits of this transformation, and, ultimately, get the rest of your organization on board. After all, as mentioned in our recent webinar series “Cloud Adoption Mythbusters,” if you can get 10% of your employees to buy in, the rest of your organization will follow.

Establish a change network

Once you have leadership buy-in, your next mission should be to create a network of “Cloud Champions” within the middle layer of your organization who will communicate vital information and support their respective teams during the change.

Embrace consistent and transparent messaging

Next, set clear expectations and goals, then establish a chain of consistent and clear communication to help your team stick to timelines. A few modes of communication to consider include:

  • email
  • town hall meetings
  • newsletters
  • videos
  • speaker series

Eliminate silos

Even if your entire organization is ready to embrace digitization with gusto, siloed development and infrastructure teams working asynchronously can create major setbacks. So, be sure both teams are working alongside one another so that the needs of both sides of the house are considered. 

Leverage Human Resources

Whenever you’re establishing a major uplift, be sure to tap your HR team for expertise. They’ll be able to provide personnel support and account for potential blockers and training gaps as well as workplace safety requirements.

Celebrate victories

Undergoing a major organizational transformation is no small task, which is why it’s important to celebrate each major milestone and reward your team for a job well done. This could include:

  • employee bonuses
  • happy hours
  • team outings 
  • career-boosting certifications

Not only will these rewards incentivize employees, but they’ll also instill loyalty and the knowledge that you truly value their time and effort.

2. Infuse accountability into your core values

If your organization is long-established, you likely have a set methodology for most systems and processes. While having a tried-and-true procedure makes it easy to set expectations, relying on legacy systems could mean you’re overlooking best practices. Furthermore, when those dated processes no longer cut it, it’s all too easy to lay the blame on the people and not the process itself. For that reason, creating a culture of accountability at all levels and approaching process improvement with a people-first mentality is a must.

When updating these broken systems with a more agile and cloud-oriented solution, you must ensure your team aligns with the new vision and fully embraces accountability as a core company culture. According to research from Google, psychological safety (i.e., the ability to take risks without feeling insecure or embarrassed) is one of the most important elements of a high-performing team and is crucial to software delivery performance, organizational performance, and productivity. In other words, the way your business responds to failure is key to shifting your culture of blame into one that thrives under change. This means that you must align the individuals who drive technology transformation for your organization with this philosophy and get them excited about this cultural shift.

3. Cultivate cultural change amid disruption

The COVID-19 pandemic prompted many large organizations to reassess their current work models, which has prompted many to adopt organizational change management programs across a wide array of environments. According to research from IDC, over 90% of enterprises worldwide will be relying on a mix of on-premises / dedicated private clouds, multiple public clouds, and legacy platforms to meet their infrastructure needs. 

The sudden health crisis required swift action in all areas of business to help dispersed teams collaborate efficiently. As a result, many business leaders found that outdated server-based systems were no longer viable, and cloud-based platforms enabled remote teams to remain connected and agile with minimal uplift. And long after the pandemic, cloud tools will continue playing a role in modernizing current business paradigms.

Adopt a product-centered approach

To ensure your teams—and company culture—are ready for the future, consider the following:

  • Align incentives and goals between development and operational teams to ensure cloud adoption success
  • Introduce product-centered transformation
  • Avoid heavy investment in services without testing them first, and instead, adopt new services iteratively
  • Use pipelines to inject new services into an automated process

Changing your company’s culture directly impacts the success of company-wide modernization initiatives. That said, according to John Shook, DORA Research, “The way to change culture is not to first change how people think, but instead to start by changing how people behave—what they do.” After all, you can’t simply switch your entire set-up to the cloud and expect your team to adapt—unless, of course, your company culture supports the shift.

If you’re ready to modernize your organization, Maven Wave is here to help. Click below and download our guide to successful cloud adoption for your organization to learn more.

Download Now

About the Author

Kylie McKee
Kylie McKee is a Content Marketing Strategist at Maven Wave with more than eight years of tech industry experience and five years of content marketing experience. Prior to joining the Maven Wave team, Kylie worked as a Content Marketing Specialist for WebPT, Inc. and earned an Associate in Applied Science in Motion Picture, Television, and New Media Production with a CCL in Screenwriting from Scottsdale Community College.
June 15th, 2021

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