Epic Battle: Creating the ‘New Normal’ Versus Gravity

By Jim Hughes

So you want to transform your company. You have identified a new product, services to support and deliver, and a launch date. You have all the demand generation plans and materials set and you are ready to pull the trigger.

But something in the back of your mind gives you pause that the launch will fall flat. What is it? Let’s call it—gravity. It’s the pressure of existing or previous company-wide behaviors that will negatively impact delivering this initiative – or what we call the “new normal”.

Transitioning a company is very fashionable today, but requires a significant amount of behavior change that many companies do not take into consideration – or take seriously. Committing to a transition also requires committing to change those behaviors that cause gravity. We see it over and over again. Where a company has the desire, developed a strategy, communicated the plan, and executed an initial ‘change management’ sales campaign. Then poof - they fall right back into previous habits unable to break the organizations gravitational pull and the initiative fails.

What to do:

  • First recruit a SWAT team that ‘opts in’ to drive the ‘New Normal’ across the organization and quickly remove any that can’t make the transition.
  • Empower them, and make them truly accountable in the strategy, design and EXECUTION of the ‘New Normal’.
  • Provide unrelenting executive air coverage—aligned to an aggressive but realistic time line—to deliver the ‘New Normal.’
  • Have ‘New Normal’ campaign read-outs at both executive and company meetings.
  • Define a clear set of WIFMs for the SWAT team that provides company, departmental, and individual benefits including recognition, prizes and compensation.
  • Get a demand generation campaign going in the market that tests the theory and integrates sales, marketing, operations and finance then land and expand.

Land and Expand: Upon completion of each ‘New Normal’ campaign expand the coverage across departments and groups. It’s all about land and expand now. Go through a similar ‘opt in’ recruitment, empowerment, support and read-out per campaign. Communicate success and challenges associated with each ‘New Normal’ campaign—and recognize the complexity of breaking the dreaded ‘gravitational pull.’ Make sure that projects are prioritized and budgeted based upon following the ‘New Normal’ land and expand process that has been put in place.

Happy endings: failure is not an option. With each of our client’s we have taken cript from “Apollo 13”—failure is not an option. Each made sure that the this ‘New Normal’ was not a trial. They each defined a SWAT team, held them accountable, defined WIFMs, scaled it across the organization. This then pivots ‘gravity’ so that it aligns and pulls the entire organization to the ‘New Normal.’

Happy and successful selling!