Common problems in transformation and how to avoid them

January 31, 2017


Many organisations either work towards or plan to work towards a transformation (especially if they are being met with tough competition or marked changes). However, there are often problems in transformation and changing not an easy task to perform.

There are of course multiple reasons for the low success rate of change initiatives. Many are highly dependent on factors such as the industry in question, company culture, market conditions and much more. Regardless of these varying circumstances, there are a some more common reasons than others. If you as a leader have knowledge of these, you can better anticipate them and work to prevent them from ever occurring.

Problems in transformation – lack of vision

Among the most common problems in transformation is a lack of vision. The end goal vision is decided by leadership in the organisation and how they view the transformation. Without a clear picture of how the end goal is going to look and how it will affect the organisation, each small insecurity or problem has the capability to knock the change project off course. A clear and concice communication between leadership and others can work wonders to solve this problem.

In order to ensure that the change happens in the expected way and with the expected end result, the vision and communication needs to be aligned with other strategic goals based on company conditions and constraints. If you manage to do this, your chances of a successful transformation increases dramatically.

Not enough leadership engagement

As the vision and end goal is being determined by the leaders of the organisations, it becomes an absolute necessity that these are involved. When engaged, they can better oversee potential problems in transformation and work preemptively. Without the participation of the deciding people, the transformation cannot happen in a coordinated way. Many wonder why results differ from expectations and this can be one cause.

By making sure that leadership positions are involved, you increase the efficiency of communications, clarify expectations and demands, and make the project more manageable in general. 

Employee resistance

Following the lack of leadersip engagement and inefficient communication, you often see a resistance among the employees. Potential reasons behind resistance includes things such as:

  • Cultural changes
  • Unwillingness to adapt to new technologies and processes
  • Inefficient communication 

You as a leader will have more success getting the employees to accept and help with the transformation process if you can in a clear and distinct way clarify how the end result will affect and improve the day-to-day situation, the work environment, individual carreers and the company as a whole. Your coworkers are much more likely to cooperate when they are presented with clear positive effects.

Lack of planning

Transformation and change are processes that simply doesn’t happen over night. Instead of planning the change implementation, leaders tend to delegate areas of responsibility. This often leads to the different handlers being unable to solve problems and coordinate on their own. This can quickly lead to tunnel vision and that coworkers start to focus on short term improvements and fixes instead of working towards the end goal.

To avoid this, use leaders to take responsibility for the bigger picture and plan a complete implementation process. This way, even if areas of responsibilities are being delegated and split among people or groups, leadership can guarantee that the performance of each area is in line with the end goal. You as a leader should use a plan where the end result is of highest priority to trust that as long as each milestone is being completed correctly, the implementation is headed in the right direction.

Change projects can come with many difficulties. There are several others, such as a lack of transparency, bad data management and analysis, and too rigid organisation structure. If you find yourself facing one of the problems above, make sure to follow each tip for increased success..

Have you experienced any of the problems in transformation mentioned above, or something else that prevented your change? Let us know in the comments below or send us a mail at!