Let’s face it: technology implementations don’t always go to plan. In fact, McKinsey recently found that 25% to 40% of tech programs exceeded their budgets or schedules by more than 50%.
So what’s the difference between a seamless implementation and one that misses the mark?
Often, it’s effective change management.
To help your team get up and running sooner (and avoid needless effort and costs), we’ve summarized nine key change management principles we’ve seen our customers use in successful implementations.
Principle 1: Create Urgency
Start with why. Why should your people really care about the technology you’re implementing?
Create a sense of urgency and get your colleagues on board by sharing the stakes. For instance, there are always winners and losers. Explain how this implementation will keep your company on the winning side of your competitors. (And the risks if you do nothing.)
Do you want to keep relying on outdated and ineffective MQLs? Or join the RevTech revolutionaries printing pipeline by targeting the right accounts, with the right message, at the right time? Spell it out to drive change faster.
Principle 2: Get Visible Executive Sponsorship
Projects can stall at the get-go without buy-in and alignment from your C-suite.
We know B2B businesses buy as groups. It also takes a village to launch a successful revenue strategy. It starts at the top, so getting leaders on board from sales, marketing, and revenue operations is essential.
The quickest way to get exec buy-in? Proof points and numbers. Our Value Analysis Calculator is a great example of giving you the ammo you need to convince leaders of the value for a new tech implementation.
Principle 3: Set Measurable Goals
A set of measurable goals act as guide posts along your path to a successful project.
But what metrics should you measure? Our All-in-One Guide to Account-Based Metrics That Matter provides excellent examples.
Your goals should cover both real-time value and longer term ROI. Share what your peers in the community have achieved and show how you can replicate that success.
4: Launch on the Right Foot
Get off to a flying start by creating a project launch outline with your 30/60/90 day plan. Clearly communicate each stage of the launch, alongside outcomes, goals, and a timeline for deliverables.
Make sure everyone has the chance to attend training (1:1, group session, academy), and open up a clear line of communication — both internally and with external vendors.
Principle 5: Put Culture First
The role of company culture is easily overlooked within the context of implementations, but it’s the basis of successful ones. New tech and processes give you the foundation, but they’re enablers. It’s your people who decide if a program is successful.
As our CMO Latane says, you gotta wanna, so put your users at the center of your implementation.
Pre-empt their natural resistance to change by addressing fears upfront and breaking up projects into easily manageable tasks. Showcase the benefits they (and the business) will get from a new way of working — whether it’s doubling deal sizes, or dramatically boosting conversions.
Principle 6: Build Advocates and Champions
Use people’s ambition to propel your project.
Do you have eager junior team members pushing for career growth opportunities? Or a team member that’s already familiar with the tech you’re implementing? Make them the go-to for quick internal questions.
Build momentum and grow advocacy by sharing wins in huddles, Slack, and management meetings.
Principle 7: Provide a Feedback Loop
You’ll have noticed the people are a common thread in these principles. But it’s not just about getting your people on board; you have to seek their opinion too.
After all, when employees feel heard, they’re 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered to do their best work. So offer a continuous feedback loop for your teams.
This also gives you qualitative data on how your implementation is going and quickly uncovers areas where you need to pivot, or provide extra support.
Principle 8: Take Advantage of Your Partner’s Expertise
Don’t be shy about getting your money’s worth. Encourage your people to take advantage of your implementor’s expertise:
- Tap into your Customer Success team to get the answers you need.
- Join customer communities.
- And complete any training on offer.
Principle 9: Know What ‘Done’ Looks Like
We all want continuous improvement. But with no endpoint, projects can meander. Having a final goal helps hold off change fatigue and keeps your people motivated.
Plus, once you reach the finishing line you can celebrate, refocus, and set new goals for whatever’s next.
Want to see how envelope-pushing companies like yours are thriving with 6sense? Check out our latest customer stories here.