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Ian Kingstone, our UK Director of Strategy & Change, and Toby Mankertz, our Principal Business Transformation Advisor, highlight the importance of envisioning workshops, and how they help leadership teams align behind business strategy and uncover new value from their digital transformation programmes.


What is the right formula for a successful envisioning workshop?

Successful envisioning involves a number of elements, including thinking about where the opportunities lie within:

  • The current marketplace – how your vision will boost your position in an increasingly competitive market
  • The business – thinking about how your people; from your senior management and employees to your suppliers, will react to and embrace the change and the support required in order to deliver the expected benefits

business innovation workshop

Changing any part of your organisation can cause confusion and disruption among your employees unless you manage it carefully. People often don’t like change. But sometimes, it needs to happen if you want to drive growth and efficiency. That’s why before undergoing any sort of change, make sure you’ve answered the following questions:

  • Do you know what the project will mean for the business?
  • Is your business vision shared among stakeholders?
  • Have you envisioned the value you could gain to maximise the ROI of your investment?
  • Are you confident that your project will achieve the outcomes intended?

Why is culture just as important as your technology?

From an envisioning point of view, you’ve got to have the right people behind the project and create a culture of innovation to support you before, during and even after its finished.

Without gaining your teams input and opinions regarding the change, this creates a barrier as there’ll be disengagement between those involved and the project itself, reducing your chances of success.

Additionally, when you look at implementing technology like an ERP system for example, it should never be viewed as just an IT project. Why? Adopting a new system will introduce change on a broad scale. Therefore, bringing in your key stakeholders from the get-go means they’ll be better equipped for change, increasing their overall engagement with the project.

business workshop

Why people are the biggest challenge to change

Technology can be managed structurally, with a clear view of how you need to get from A to B. However, when it comes down to your key stakeholders, it can be difficult to align motivations and mindsets, creating complexities with your change management strategy.

For example, when you’re restructuring roles and responsibilities, there’ll automatically be resistance to a certain extent as naturally, people aren’t a fan of change.

Therefore, your project success relies on envisioning so your teams can see why you’re making this happen. There are two key elements of envisioning that need to be addressed when communicating with your stakeholders:

  • What challenges there are and how your change can help reduce the impact of these
  • Where you want the end goal of the vision to be so you can explain why the change is necessary

business vision

How do Columbus carry out an envisioning workshop?

At Columbus, we understand how important great communication is throughout your project, which is why we actively engage with every department in your organisation. This helps your teams bring new ideas to the table and aligns mindsets to reduce friction. Here’s everything we aim to deliver in our workshops:

  • Understand your current operating model, business strategy and technology landscape – we’ll conduct one-to-one interviews with your business management team and your key stakeholders to understand the opportunities and challenges your transformation programme presents
  • Establish the groundwork in the envisioning workshop – over the 3-to-4-hour duration of the workshop, we will work with you to articulate and capture business challenges and opportunities, as well as discuss their impact across your organisation
  • Collate a comprehensive list of prioritised ideas and solutions – as a team, we will work to understand the business value of the proposed solutions and their alignment to strategic drivers and business visions
  • Challenge your current ways of working - offer advice on best practice approaches and emerging technologies, and advise on the skills and capabilities required to transform an organisation

As a result of Columbus conducting an Envisioning Workshop, you will have:

  • A detailed vision for new business value
  • A confirmed business model
  • Strategic priorities aligned to business value
  • A benefits realisation plan
  • Senior leadership alignment and buy-in on the transformation priorities

business value

Read about our envisioning workshop below to learn more about this topic, including:

  • How our envisioning draws heavily on our Value First approach
  • The process and scope of the workshop

Get your copy below.

Read about Envisioning


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