Functioning in the 60/20/20 World during Software Implementation

We know that many software implementation projects failed. It’s not because the software doesn’t work. It’s because many organizational obstacles have prevented the new system from being implemented. That’s why, during our customer on boarding process, we pay a lot of attention to the organizational obstacles and try to navigate through them.

Recently I had a conversation with a professional who is an innovative thinker and a “get things done” kind of guy. His insights about the “60/20/20” world brilliantly captured the root of the organizational obstacles.

“In most organizations, 20% of the people lead the change, 60% of the people follow and do what needs to be done, and the remaining 20% resist the change and they often create obstacles that drain the energy and sabotage the projects”.

During software implementations, we work with and support the 20% who lead the change, educate and lead the 60% who will help to get things done, and try to minimize the impact from the rest of 20%.

During our implementation projects, we have worked with plenty of professionally who are the 20% leading the changes in their organizations. They are in all kinds of functions: Property Management, Procurement, Contracts, Finance, Logistics, Facility, IT, or Corporate Security Management, but they all share these 10 common traits:

  1. They told us exactly why they chose us and what they expect us to deliver. Their criteria for choosing us are precisely what differentiate us from our competitors.
  2. They know exactly what needs to be done to move forward.
  3. They are focused and dedicated to these goals.
  4. They don’t get distracted by the negative voices from their own organizations. They navigate through them skillfully.
  5. They stay cool when things don’t go as planned and quick in identifying problems and adjusting the plan.
  6. They work hard. They are the ones who attend trainings, watch our training videos, read our knowledge articles, and test the configurations. You can always count on them for feedback.
  7. They value opinions from software vendors on what changes are feasible and what are not, because they are savvy users of enterprise software systems and understand how to leverage Commercial Off the Shelf software products.
  8. They are pragmatic. They know what features are important and what are optional. They focus on the big things and not sweat over small details.
  9. They have a lot of personal integrity, communicate clearly, and you can trust them to get things done.
  10. They are fun to work with because they exuberate positive energy.


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