Author: Tolulope Idris, Managing Director – Serengeti OOH

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Quite right, it isn’t in all situations that reorganisation poses a risk to a business.  Reorganisation happens for so many reasons but very often employees and investors associate reorganisation with businesses setting the scene for troubling times or failure.  Nonetheless, this isn’t always the case as reorganisation for most thriving business happens because that organisation has decided to concentrate on resolving issues affecting its staff, strategy or market focus and positioning itself to achieve a higher level of growth as a business.

Every business entity that is focused on growth in every aspect of the organisation must always view the organisation as evolving; never constant and metamorphosing to ensure it remains relevant to its investors, customers and career-minded. In recent times, many CEOs have assumed reorganisation of various elements of a business as a key determinant of company growth and financial performance, but we say that when done without the end in mind and for the right purpose such reorganisation can hinder the sustainability and longevity of an organisation and its business.  As such, CEOs being the ‘Steering Officer’ take accountability for creating the required yet appropriate reorganisation model and vision for innovation and growth of the business—the corporate entity and the people that make it a business—to be visible.

In this article, we shall provide some insight to the pitfalls that can set the reorganisation process to present more risks than benefits. Aside from an unclearly thought out reorganisation process posing more risks than benefits, we have come up with a few more.

Presumption rather than Purpose

Every new executive is pressured into making a mark, hitting the road running, making the triple double in the first year, creating their core team of loyalists. We are all guilty in some way.  However aspiring this may be, not having a purpose for reorganisation poses more risks than benefit. What provides that confirmation of purpose is using the power of hindsight—comprehension, acceptance, assessment and action—to create an all-encompassing purpose for reorganisation. This does not mean punishment or alienation of processes or people, rather it is re-evaluation and realignment of same.  Some CEOs have done so based on increasing revenue, growth performance, reducing costs, and shifting from a market focus. Whatever the specifics are, reorganisation always happens in pursuit of something greater.

Intuition over insight

If all CEO’s were clairvoyants there will hardly be any business case studies to learn from! When organisations undermine the importance of a succession plan and focus on filling the gap created by a job, there is, more often than not, the risk of bringing in the ‘miracle worker’ who comes in with little or no insight of what the peculiarities of that organisation is. When it then comes to reorganisation, the process is more intuitive than insightful; there is an absence of an accurate and deep understanding of the organisation’s peculiarities. It is beneficial to always begin by taking a look inwards and creating a reorganisation process that is tailored to the organisational structure, business make-up, and the employees. Insight allows for reorganisation to test, challenge and assert the integrity of value system; it is not as biased or divisive as intuition. Intuition is never enough to justify any decision.

Side-lining the sweet spot

Just as the sweet spot, the part that gives the most power for the least effort, is seen as an optimum point in ball and racquet games; in an organisation that sweet spot is the meeting point of the potentiality of the organisation—its capability, and the intensity of its operation—its competence.  When reorganisation fails to take notice or overlook the potentiality of those little efforts, processes, or non-essential staff, it is likely that only the big things are addressed and the little effort and/or mundane tasks get overlooked until they ripple into greater problems.

Some of these tasks often overlooked are roles that are perceived by some organisations as unnecessary or non-money yielding.  These tasks and roles often overlooked are those that guard non-financial yet integral assets such as reputation, data and records, and estate/facilities. Discovering the organisation’s sweet spot provides foresight on new business ventures and likely ways of reorganisation.

In mitigating the risks associated with reorganisation, change agents should have a bird’s eye view of the organisation. Focusing more on the end—where we want to be, and reorganising to meet the requirements of that end, ensuring that it maintains the vision on a career-minded organisation; while ensuring there are SMART goals, clearly laid out and communicated procedure that engages those that make the organisation’s business be.

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