Leading Change When Business Is Good

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Leading Change when business is good
Sam Palmisano’s challenge: finding a mandate to continue a company’s transformation, his response a bottom up reinvention of IBM’s venerable values Palisimo recognized the key task would be to unite IBM’s global workforce behind a common business vision and a common set of values.

* IBM help 3 day discussion via the corporate intranet about the companies values, dubbed ValuesJam * Struck a core with employees company wide, positive and negative feedback * At the heart of ValueJam was what was worth preserving and what needed to be changed * In 1914 Watson Sr. decreed 3 corporate principles

1. Respect of the individual
2. The best customer service
3. The pursuit of excellence
* Palisimo used original basic beliefs and feedback of ValueJam as a basis for new set of corporate values * Palisimo was a true-blue IBMer who started as a salesman, he was deeply invested and passionate about the company’s success * Gerstner was an outsider, a former CEO of RJR Nabisco and an ex McKinsey consultant * To prove these new values were more than just window dressing Palmisano made changes immediately * He called the director of a major business unit, e business and charged her with identifying gaps between the values and company practices * He said an Organic system is what a company needs to adapt. Which is IBM’s values (values, principles, DNA) of company. They allow you to change everything from your products to your strategies to your business model but remain true to your essence, you basic mission and identity. * Unfortunately over time Watson’s beliefs became distorted and took on a life of their own * Employees were stuck in the old way of doing things they could never see another view * When market shifted they cut work force 400,000 people, equivalent of providence RI * How do you get people to passionately pursue change?

* You can’t command and control...
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