A company with +150 employees promoted a new CEO with the mandate to take on a culture transition. The new CEO knew the culture transition had to be driven by the informal organization, and he knew that the deep-rooted leadership style from the years before could become a serious obstacle to the success of the transition. That’s why the new CEO wanted to find the key persons on employee level – the key influencers – that could help him drive the new culture.
Innovisor was therefore asked to identify who to engage in the new transition.
We identified two insights that the new CEO needed in order to accelerate the culture transition successfully
1. Collaboration barrier
The first key finding into the organizational network was that the company’s formal structure resulted in a collaboration barrier. Six leaders were bottlenecks for collaboration across locations. The company’s largest location – New York – only collaborated with the rest of the company through Leader A, who displayed a controlling leadership style
The second key finding into the organizational network was that influence was found on employee level! Six key influencers influenced 94% of the company. All the people who were part of this group were surprising names to the new CEO.
What was next?
Based on these two insights, the new CEO decided to run the following activities to use the bottom-up influence as accelerator:
- The six key influencers were engaged as the voices of the people allowing the new CEO to understand how the rest of the organization perceived the culture transition
- The six key influencers were involved in specific cultural activities during leadership meetings
In addition, the new CEO also knew he needed to fix the risk from New York, because imagine if Leader A would not be with the company. To strengthen collaboration and agility, he, therefore, decided to do two things:
- selected employees from New York were included in cross-collaborative projects with other locations of the company
- Leader A was repositioned into a Special Assignment role with no formal managerial obligations
Learn more about how this benefitted the new CEO in this video