Case Study /

The company had issues with change management. As an internet start-up Gilt was operating in an environment where things were constantly changing: new ...
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Case Study /

Tailored Vision To Results surveys pinpoint the organisation’s weaknesses around change management and establish a clear path for improvement.

Change Management in a Fast Paced Start Up Environment Incorporating the Human Side of Change 01/ The Client Gilt is an online fashion flash sales website. It was founded in 2007 in the United States as an internet start-up and has grown significantly, now employing over 1000 people in offices in the USA, Ireland and Japan.

“Gilt approached 02/ The Challenge rogenSi for help The company had issues with change management. As an internet Gilt was operating in an environment where things were when the company start-up constantly changing: new technologies were frequently being introduced and the culture was fast-moving but the company’s people was about a faced challenges keeping up with the pace of change. Gilt was in the quarter of the way midst of a large organisational change as the company implemented a FIFO (an accounting term for First In, First Out) system in relation into implementing new to the way it process its inventory. the FIFO project.” Originally the company selected the products to be photographed and featured on the site according to what would create the biggest aesthetic impact and when the sale would occur. Gilt used fashion designers and professional photographers to create artistic pages and often waited for the goods to come in that would create the biggest buzz. By implementing FIFO to create efficiencies, Gilt changed this approach completely, focusing instead on photographing the products that were first available rather than waiting for items. This change impacted the merchandising, creative, technology and operations departments and people did not handle it well. The company needed to equip its leadership team to handle change management more effectively ahead of another company-wide change.

03/ The Solution Gilt approached rogenSi for help when the company was about a quarter of the way into implementing the FIFO project. The consultants from rogenSi used their Vision To Results assessment to gauge the company’s ability to change and discover its strengths and weaknesses around change management. rogenSi produced diagnostic data indicating how the different teams in the company were performing against ten leadership factors. This was followed by qualitative interviews with 20-30 individuals across the organisation asking them about their alignment with Gilt’s strategy and the implementation of the FIFO process. After this two-pronged approach had been completed, rogenSi produced two documents detailing the results of the quantitative and qualitative assessments which they shared with the company’s senior leadership team at an off-site meeting. The Vision To Results survey highlighted the company’s strengths and weaknesses in detail and these findings were backed up by qualitative quotes from the interviews with individuals. A number of themes around handling change emerged from the feedback and the rogenSi consultants presented five key areas or ‘change imperatives’ for the leadership team to concentrate on to improve their ability to manage change. These included establishing a culture of accountability and clarifying and communicating the vision and strategy for change. When they communicated as a leadership team it wasn’t consistent, so rogenSi recommended an improved communication planning process.

After obtaining the buy in from the leadership team, the rogenSi consultants worked with them to start developing the skills needed to improve in key areas. These included running a short term Vision To Results survey that was tailored to fit Gilt’s culture and coaching the management team to prepare them for another forthcoming change project which involved some of the company’s departments changing location. “One of the key benefits of working with rogenSi was to get their outside perspective on what we were doing,” says Susan Riskin, Director of Human Resources at Gilt. “We w