It was only last week that I was discussing the  70% failure rate statistic with about 25 change leaders in the National Health Service, some of whom were unaware of its enduring nature. Ashkenas looks at this issue by turning his mind to the difference between change and transformation. For many in our system, it seems that the two have become synonymous with the terms used interchangeably.

Ashkenas makes the point they are not the same. We would all do well to understand the distinction. The focus of transformation upon unpredictability and the experimental nature of the work require us to consider the approaches and methods we use to support such work. Transformation is about vision and culture;  it is not the world of  producing enough project plans to drown in. Yes, rigorous delivery is vital and projects will be delivered within a transformation journey, however being clear about why they are different might just help leaders deal with the reality of failure in change work. We must do everything we can to galvanise our work.


Maxine CraigThis contextual piece was written by Maxine Craig, Organisational Development Leader from the NHS, find her on Twitter @maxine_craig