Unfortunately, it's not that simple, and what has probably happened is that you've recruited people who are a good fit for the Organisation but who won't challenge the Organisation to change. They may well have been part of teams that made Transformations successful other Organisations and their personalities and approaches resonate with the Senior Leadership in your Organisation. That's great! However, it is probable that you've fallen into the 'Big Blue' trap, whereby you've recruited with the same mindset that maintained IBM's preeminence in computer Hardware for so long:
"No one ever got fired for buying IBM"
This is playing it safe and results in our hiring people that everyone finds attractive as a fit for the Organisation, which may be fine if you have a stable and high performing Organisation, where maintaining the current performance is the aim.
However, if you want to Transform your Organisation's performance, you need Change Agents; people who will challenge the Status Quo and take contrary positions to the prevailing paradigms. The problem is that if you hire People who fit the Organisation, you're hiring Same Agents, not Change Agents.
"The problem is that if you hire People who fit the Organisation, you're hiring Same Agents, not Change Agents."
The people that you've hired may have been integral to, or even led the, Transformations made in their Organisations and can retrospectively rationalise the steps taken and explain the process that their previous Organisations went through. They can succinctly explain the deltas between where your Organisation is and where it needs to be in terms of Operational Performance and Culture. However, what they will often miss is the know-how to make that step-change: How to engage the people in moving away from the prevailing paradigms and toward the new. The symptoms of this will be that there will be a lot of conversations, debates, meetings, PowerPoint presentations and ideas but very little in the sense of tangible change.
The challenge that this presents for us in hiring is that, when we want to make change, we have to avoid hiring people who fit, because this inherently means that, even if they know what must be done, they will be reluctant to do so due to their fear of becoming an outsider. We must hire people who have the courage to Challenge the status quo, to metaphorically speaking state that the "Emperor has no Clothes on" and, as Leaders we have to be open to the challenge that these people will bring to us.
This doesn't mean that we will hire people who are simply argumentative or contrary in nature; this isn't about hiring 'nay sayers' or negative personalities. The people who we hire must be positive in their outlook and have excellent competency in Lean Thinking and Change Management, great interpersonal skills and be able to Coach colleagues at all levels in the organisation. However, the rare characteristic that they will bring is the confidence and strength of character to take the contrary view and be the person who holds the mirror up to the Organisation's Leadership when they're expecting different results from doing the same things.
There are many Lean Leadership Books out there but I have reviewed those that I think are of most use on my Book Recommendations page.
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