« Top 10 Minus One | Main | Concealed Weapon »

I Resolve

It is that time of year again. Did you make one? Have you had much success with these in the past?

Yes, we are talking about New Year’s Resolutions. Whatever it is that you might resolve to do in the new year, it usually involves a personal change, and one that most likely is remarkably hard to accomplish (which is why it has required a resolution to make it happen). This is a matter of resolve, and it demands large doses.

Driving Wrong

At the core of a resolution is a personal change of some kind. To lose weight is the most popular resolution to make this time of year, and the purchase of soon-to-be-neglected exercise equipment spikes substantially during the month of January. Many personal changes are hard. Dropping a cigarette habit, resolution # 2, is now a multi-billion dollar industry, but that change is made even more difficult due to the physical addiction to nicotine. These two most common resolutions require changes of behavior, changes of habit, changes of attitude, and physiological changes. The combination is formidable.

Interestingly, we don’t have an analogous yearly collective pledge at work that focuses on what we are going to do differently for the business. Although, some companies go through an annual planning process that can be as ineffective as the making of individual New Year’s Resolutions. However, the difficulty at the core of keeping resolutions does play a strong role in the business world as well. Accomplishing change is hard to do.

The planning and execution of organizational initiatives involves exactly the same set of changes that are involved with the personal change at the center of every resolution. Organizational changes will demand changes in behavior, changes in habit (business process), changes in attitude, and even physiological changes (work-related skills). Similarly, some organizational initiatives are harder to accomplish than others, like losing weight or dropping butts. CRM tends to fit in this category of being on the harder end of the change continuum.

Individuals who are most successful achieving their resolutions made in the heat of the moment on December 31st tend to have something in common – resources. You will do better at losing weight if you have access to weight loss techniques and knowledge, a plan for changing diet and exercise, a support community to coach and encourage, and (in some cases) the finances to correctly fund a proper diet and exercise routine. Likewise, your CRM program requires the same resources.

The larger the CRM initiative, and the more complex the changes involved, the greater the amount of resources needed to drive successful change. In the case of CRM initiatives specifically, required resources include:
- a solid change management plan,
- the competency to drive management sponsorship,
- the expertise to overcome resistance to change through appropriate user involvement,
- the capacity to redefine business processes,
- the capacity to manage the communication of changes, and
- the ability to deliver commensurate training.

Insufficient resources for your CRM program will land you in the same place as most New Year’s Resolutions – incomplete goal attainment. So, I suggest a 2011 resolution for your CRM initiative – make sure you secure enough resources to accomplish the changes.

I hope you have a prosperous 2011.

Post a comment

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)