When developing a strategy for capitalizing on disruption and innovation in financial services (FS), it’s critical to design and execute a professional change capability.

As we discussed in the last three parts of this series, our FS Change Survey 2017 shows that some FS firms are better than others at making transformational change happen. These change leaders demonstrate a stronger vision and leadership, pay attention to the human factor, and have a more effective change execution capability.

In order to handle constant change, especially larger transformational change, FS firms must improve their professional change capability. Devising a clear change vision and portfolio will reveal a better understanding of the change capabilities necessary to thrive in the new digital economy.

FS firms should foster a culture that embraces change, builds agility and stimulates innovation. They should strengthen their change execution capability by including the right internal teams, methods, tools and governance appropriate for a range of change programs and continuous change scenarios. They also need to build relationships with the right external change partners.

Here are some practical steps each FS firm can take to improve its change capability:

  • Lead change with vision. Develop a clear narrative for your transformation, focusing on outcomes and business value.
  • Prioritize investments in ‘the new’. Ensure sufficient funding for essential change now and create space to develop ‘the new’.
  • Innovate and scale for value. Balance experimentation and scaling to accelerate the creation of value for customers and the business alike.
  • Make change more human. Strive deliberately to develop a culture, and a workforce, that embrace change, innovation and agility.
  • Be open to change from the outside. Consider your role within ecosystems to enhance the customer experience and better serve their needs.
  • Build true agility. This requires balancing pace and stability – adaptability and speed of reaction on the one hand, and effective decision making and strong disciplines on the other.
  • Prioritize and develop your change capability. Develop an organization-wide change leadership and a professional change capability that can deliver continuous, rapid transformation.

The FS firms that capitalize on the benefits of change, instead of succumb to it, will be the ones generating the outcomes their shareholders demand. Be sure your firm is on the right path before it’s too late.

To learn more, read the full Banking or Insurance report: Financial Services Change Survey 2017 

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