Change is the #1 Organisational Priority. How Change Capable is Yours?

#1 Organisational Priority: Adapt to Change

“Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.”

Often attributed to the late, great physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking, this quote’s provenance is actually in question.

Which is good, because we disagree with it.

Why is Stephen Hawking wrong?

Capability is the quality of ‘being capable’ – a capacity to do something.

It’s subtly different from ability, which is a skill – a competence, or an aptitude.

I might have the ability to do something – for example, to run when chased – but am I a capable runner? Possibly not. I could, however, develop my capacity to run, such that I become a reasonably capable runner.

Capability isn’t just for people. It’s for organisations, too.

Consulting giant McKinsey & Company defines capability as anything an organisation does well that drives meaningful business results.

A few years ago McKinsey found that capability building is a top priority for most companies. Fifty-eight percent of their respondents said it’s a top three priority, and 90% placed it in the top ten.

Unfortunately, they also found that most companies don’t focus their training programs on capabilities that add the most value to performance.boy-666803  Most training programs don’t focus on capabilities that add the most value to performance

This is problematic, especially when we consider that change is a top priority in many organisations.

So: many organisations believe change is important, but they’re not investing in their employees’ capability to implement change effectively.


Is it because many organisations don’t know what it means to be change capable?

What does it mean to be ‘change capable’?

Simply put, a change capable organisation is ready for change. It has the efficacy to respond to nonstop change, which helps employees consider change to be business as usual and not an obstacle to completing their work tasks.

These organisations ensure that change capability is recruited for, developed, and rewarded throughout the full employee lifecycle.

Our research shows that change capable organisations THINK differently – they focus and have an organisational mindset and behaviours that are conducive to change – and INVEST differently – they embed processes and develop capabilities so their people are equipped to act.

As a result, organisations can implement changes quickly, efficiently, effectively and with less disruption. This means a greater return on investment and more opportunities to get ahead of competitors.

How is this #1 priority being addressed in your organisation? Is it on the radar?

Visit our website to read more about the characteristics of truly change capable organisations.

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