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The Business Transformation

Podcast 033-Unlocking Change Management Insights with Dr. Glenn Hole | Business Transformation Podcast
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Podcast 033– Dr. Glenn Hole - Why Cultivating a Positive Culture is Crucial for Successful Transformation

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"🎙️ Just wrapped up a thought-provoking discussion with Dr. Glenn Hole on The Business Transformation Podcast. His wisdom that "Change management is about treating people well and taking them aboard on the journey to change it... it's understanding psychology and philosophy" resonates deeply. Tune in for more insights on the human side of change management! 💼💭 " #ChangeManagement #HumanSide #WisdomFromExperts

🎙️ New Episode Release! 🎙️ Dive into the World of Change Management with Dr. Glenn Hole!

In this enthralling episode of the Business Transformation Podcast, host Heath Gascoigne uncovers the intricate web of change management with the highly esteemed Dr. Glenn Hole. With a rich background as a PhD holder in Change Management, a part-time professor in Norway, and an expert with over two decades of experience, Dr. Hole stands as the pinnacle of knowledge and experience in the field.

🚀 Strategies for Success: Discover Dr. Hole’s unique insights into navigating the challenges and opportunities in change management across diverse sectors including healthcare, retail, and energy. Learn about his innovative approach to tackling projects that have faced multiple failures, leveraging his deep understanding of psychology and philosophy to drive meaningful change.

🌍 Digital Transformation & ESG: Journey through the intertwining paths of digital transformation and environmental sustainability with Dr. Hole. Unpack the crucial role of technology not as the centerpiece, but as a strategic tool that, when wielded correctly, amplifies the effectiveness of change initiatives.

🧠 Psychology at the Core: Dr. Hole emphasizes the paramount importance of understanding human psychology and philosophy in change management. Gain insights into the art of engaging and motivating individuals to embrace change, ensuring a smoother transition and heightened receptiveness to new processes and technologies.

💡 Real-World Wisdom: With anecdotes from Dr. Hole’s extensive career, this episode is a goldmine for business transformation leaders, managers, and consultants seeking actionable strategies and deep dives into the practical aspects of change management. From the nuances of creating a culture conducive to innovation to the significance of aligning digital transformation with overarching business strategies, there’s a wealth of knowledge to explore.

🌟 Tune in now to this must-listen episode of the Business Transformation Podcast for a masterclass with Dr. Glenn Hole. Embark on a journey of discovery, learning, and inspiration as we delve into the realms of change management and digital transformation like never before. Whether you’re looking to refine your approach, seeking guidance on overcoming obstacles, or simply fascinated by the field, this episode is your gateway to transforming insights into action. Let’s transform together! 🚀

"🎙️ Just had an enlightening conversation with Dr. Glenn Hole on The Business Transformation Podcast. His insight that "Technology is just the tool... You have to start with the strategy" reminds us of the importance of aligning technology with business goals. Tune in for more insights on leveraging technology for strategic transformation! 💼🔧 " #BusinessTransformation #TechnologyStrategy #StrategicAlignment

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Read Full Transcript

Heath Gascoigne (00:38):

This is the show where we speak to industry experts and professionals to share their stories, their strategies, stories and insights to help you start turn around and grow your business transformation. Welcome to the Business Transformation Podcast, and in this episode, we are talking to one of those experts. We are talking to Dr. Glenn Hula, who is a professor in change management, sorry, PhD in change management, also a part-time professor in lecturing in Norway in change management, an expert let’s say. We have got the most experienced and also qualified change manager we’ve ever had on the show. So, Dr. Glen, pleasure to have you on. Welcome.

Dr. Glenn (01:25):

Thank you for having me here.


Heath Gascoigne (01:27):

Okay, you’re welcome. Actually, so if anyone hadn’t picked it up already from Dr. Glen’s background, he is in Norway. If you’re not been, that’s the Northern Lights. Lights, literally that’s actually his back door looking outside. So, it’s also fitting that not only has Dr. Glenn got a vast background and we’ll get into it in change management, but also in digital transformation and also, we’ll say ESG or environmental ESG. Well, and I think it’s like New Zealand, people think of New Zealand as green and lush and the same likewise for Norway. Okay. So, for our audience to help them follow along, as we usually do on the show, we talk about, we have three points or a theme. The theme, general theme is digital transformation rather, and we’ll have elements of change management there. We’ll talk about from your experience, Dr. Glenn, the, I should actually say Professor Glenn. Sorry their professor.



Okay. Beg your pardon. Okay. We should actually Mohamed cut that out. Hey, no. So, we’ll talk about digital transformation. You have been doing this now for a number of years, two decades. You have worked across various verticals, healthcare specialist, healthcare, retail, shipping, all forms of energy and particularly Norway has a hydro system, so around hydro systems and you are also a, what is the term? Your type of transformations that you deal with where the client has had an attempt 1, 2, 3 or four attempts at it and as a change manager that presents a particular problem or issue or challenge because of two parts and we’ll get into it. The client experience now has a sense of urgency. That is what opportunities that are moving. But also, the staff themselves have been through this change a couple of times and they might be suffering from what we’d call change inertia.



So, we will get into that. So first and foremost, in terms of digital transformation and with your specialty and change management and CSR is what is the industry has a good understanding of this space. What are they doing well? What are they not doing well? The second point being have you a particular approach that now you follow 20 years. Also, you are a PhD in change management, you are a part-time professor, lecturing in change management. So, what is your approach that you follow when you go in? And then sometimes is there a case where after clients have been at it for four times, you go, you know what, I can’t help you and walk away. So, there’s some red flags that you see, and you go, this is going to be a little bit hard. Maybe you won’t take it on. And the third point is now that you’ve done this for many years, you are also a published academic published author.


You’ve published a few papers on change management, particularly around very interesting coming from Norway and Green is that you’ve published a paper on green production and textiles, which is very interesting. If we know about the textile industry is, I’m not saying notorious, but there are side effects of producing garments and at scale there is an environmental impact there. So, you’ve written a paper on that. So now knowing the third point, now knowing what you have known and done over the last two decades and subject, we had an expert in it and teaching lecturing on it, what would you do differently if you had to do it again?


Dr. Glenn (05:09):

It’s not necessary they would do so much differently, but I always said that in my next life I would be a psychology or a shrink. Because if you’re going to succeed as a change manager or as a CEO, you need to know psychology or you need to effort.

Heath Gascoigne (05:29):

Yep, okay.


Dr. Glenn (05:31):

My student always asks me, what kind of books should I read to become a better manager? What kind of management books? I always say give a shit in all the management books. Read psychology or read philosophy. Then you’ll learn how to treat people because change management is about treating people well and take the people aboard on the journey to change it.


Heath Gascoigne (05:53):

Great tips there. So, ladies and gentlemen, if you missed that, get your business books, have them out, get the two. Not literally psychology and philosophy. Yep. That’s the subject of study. So that’s interesting because we’re talking in terms of digital transformation and a lot of techies and technologists will think digital transformation is all about the digital and go and well, what do your response to that?


Dr. Glenn (06:22):

Probably in generally, because I’ve been working in Norway, I’ve been working with Scandinavia and Nordic companies, everyone starts with the technology. They don’t understand that the technology is just the two. You have to start with the strategy, how you want to move forward. The strategy has to be in the bottom. Then you need good business process that support the strategy.


Heath Gascoigne (06:46):



Dr. Glenn (06:46):

You need people like you and me, intellectual capital to understand the strategy and the business process, but to help the organization to reach the goal, we need technology, but technology is just the tool. Nothing else.

Heath Gascoigne (07:01):

Yeah. Okay, very good. So, I’m going to play that back in case the audience missed it. Okay guys, listen really carefully. The doctors just said, professor has just said start with the strategy. So, the technologists who love to their technology got the technology solution in their hand. So, every problem is a technology one. But wait a minute, just put your technology little hammer down for a minute. So, the first part is the strategy and then from the strategy you said business processes supporting that strategy and then the intellectual capital from the people. How much weight should we put on this part, the intellectual capital?


Dr. Glenn (07:43):

At least 50% because you need to train people, people have to understand, people need to be taken on board on the new system.


Heath Gascoigne (07:50):

Okay. You said the key word there on board and you said a little bit earlier to the journey taking people on the journey, but how critical is that? Why can’t we just do a change project, set an agenda, a vision and say there you go, we’re going to implement some new processes and the new system and you’re going to have an app and it is going to be fun.


Dr. Glenn (08:12):

In theory it’s all work fine, but in practice people are much higher educated Today people want to know why they should change and therefore you need to take them on the journey. They have to understand it.


Heath Gascoigne (08:26):

Okay. You said the words there, Diana is going to send the why. I’m sure it’s probably in the tip of your tongue that the what’s in it for me?


Dr. Glenn (08:36):



Heath Gascoigne (08:37):

Yeah, yeah. I’ll tell you that’s like a tried and true. I don’t what you call it an acronym, but a framework or way of thinking. The W-I-I-F-M. Yeah. Okay. So, the first part is they’ve got to understand why they’re changing.


Dr. Glenn (08:56):



Heath Gascoigne (08:57):

Okay. So, in terms of the industry, what is the industry? Have they generally got it understood? Look, I’ve seen recently, probably in the last one or two years that, well probably before the one or two years was there not so much, it was lucky if you got a change manager on your project and now it’s almost you get at least a project manager. You’ll have maybe a business architect if you’re lucky and a business analyst and then you’ll have a change manager, a business change person, a change analyst. But these change analysts though, they tend to more have a process focus as opposed to a people focus. But I think there’s been a bit of a shift that people go, oh, actually we are not looking after the people. We’ve got the structural change. We got how everyone’s going to be positioned. We’ve got the skills and the training. But the part about which you talked about earlier, psychology and philosophy, that’s in the head, right?


Dr. Glenn (09:50):

Yes. Well, what you in general see that all change processes or project are standalone. Very often I need to discuss with both board of directors and their CEO and president and say, you need to link the change project to the overall purpose of the company. What is your goal? What is the vision for the company? You cannot have one vision that going in one direction and the project in another direction.


Heath Gascoigne (10:20):

Oh yeah, that it isn’t that I think for experienced people like yourself, and I’ve seen it, I won’t mention any names. BP on a client that I helped once, not long ago. They have a business process that they want to optimize about their projects, about their energy production, about extraction production and then manufacturing and taking their product to market. And they said and talking about your disjoint about they have a vision, but they have some other activity and they’re not joined up. They tell me. Yeah, so this is a common problem.


Dr. Glenn (10:57):



Heath Gascoigne (10:58):



Dr. Glenn (11:00):

The same problem if you go to a specialist healthcare service in Norway, if you go to the retail industry, I seen it everywhere.


Heath Gascoigne (11:07):

Okay, so why is that a problem? How can you detect it and how do you solve it?


Dr. Glenn (11:17):

I always start when I go to major change projects, what is the vision for the company? What is the purpose of the company? Then you need to split the goals and mission down so each member in the organization understands their part of it. What is they producing? How can they change their habits? How can they change their way of working so the company can reach the goal faster?


Heath Gascoigne (11:43):

Okay, so you are bringing the what’s in it for me? All the way down from the top down through the organization from executives down to operation and that part where you said, so they can see what’s in it for them from their vision down into the goals. So, the strategic goals for guys upstairs and then operational goals for the guys in operations


Dr. Glenn (12:08):

And we need to be linked.


Heath Gascoigne (12:09):

Together. Yeah, yeah. Okay. Alright. We’ll get into the tool and actually how you do that later, but how do you have that conversation then with usually executives like they’ll say it’s cliche. No one gets fired for hiring IBM, right? And so the executives may have made a decision to bring some consultants in and they might’ve, depending on the ask of those consultants have said this is what you should do and there’s another activity going on separately or independently and they’re doing another piece of work and these guys have got the go ahead and said, yeah, we’ve got a vision but another piece of work is going off another way. But they don’t want to stop either.


Dr. Glenn (12:49):



Heath Gascoigne (12:50):

So therefore yeah,


Dr. Glenn (12:53):

We need to sit down with the top management, and we need to explain them in detail what they need to do. Then we need to have a common meeting with everyone who is in management position and say we need to change, and everyone have to be in board. If not, we have to remove people because the latest research and scientific also shows that middle management can be one of the major reasons that change project is failing because they’re sabotaging the project.


Heath Gascoigne (13:22):

Okay. That’s little takeaway their guys. You picked it up there. Middle management is a key to success or failure to your transformation or change project. They’re either going to we are talking the impact influence matrix. You’ve got what is it, the supporters champions? Yes. And then on one other side you’ve got the, what is it? The destroyers? Not literally, but yeah. Okay. So, the key part there is when you’ve identified in the zoo and you’ve got the middle management, you’ve got to make sure they’re either on board or they’re off board. Okay.


Dr. Glenn (14:03):

One of the first thing you need to do when you come in, you need to find who is on board. If not, you’ll fail.


Heath Gascoigne (14:09):

Yep. Okay. Yeah. Because the people who aren’t, and there is also I teach our students, is that when you are doing your stakeholder mapping and understanding where they sit in your impact and influence matrix, that they sit in certain quadrants, you can have two things, keep them there or if you want to influence them, there’s tools and techniques and strategies to move them around the matrix. So, if they’re one time a distractor, then it’s like, well how do you address the distractor? And sometimes it’s you over please them, you give them more than they ask. You constantly communicate and then so you, oh, now they’re on board or they didn’t have their issues or concerns addressed before and now you are. Is that kind of


Dr. Glenn (14:56):

Yes. And you also need to find because as in general as in this society, we have influencers the same we have in corporate organization. They are a lot of influencers. Influencers, they’re not necessary executives. You need to find the influencers. Then you have to work with them so they can influence the rest of the organizations.


Heath Gascoigne (15:15):

Oh yes, you said the key word there and I think that’s a little bit overlooked. I think for the audience, I think we’ve all seen it ourselves. We’ve got the 16, 17-year-old influencer on Instagram and Facebook. They might not be in a position of power, but they influence a lot of people and you’ve probably also got something like that in the organization. And so probably the best will be a strategy to get them on board straight away.


Dr. Glenn (15:47):



Heath Gascoigne (15:48):

Alright. So, you’ve got to hunt them down and get them on board. And if you can’t, what happens then You’ve got to manage them,


Dr. Glenn (16:00):

You need to remove them. Same with bad managers. They have to be removed.


Heath Gascoigne (16:05):

As if we’re getting down to the nuts and bolts here, this is great. Now Dr. Professor, again, I think when we go into a company as consultants, we’re independent so we don’t have any emotional investment into this. But when the staff themselves who are invested in there for many reasons, one also being permanent and it may be their livelihood to have that conversation to executives to say, okay, Johnny, he’s not on board. I know he’s been here for 25 years and he’s the longest standing and he knows absolutely everything, but he’s got to go. That’s a hard pill for a lot of people to swallow, right?


Dr. Glenn (16:52):



Heath Gascoigne (16:53):

So how do you start that conversation?


Dr. Glenn (16:58):

I generally change the conversations because it’s very often it is like you said, but I always like to sit down with the people that they say I have to go because it’s so difficult. She doesn’t listen. When I sit down with this kind of people, then I really understand they have a lot of ideas, they have a lot of things that they have given to the managers that have never reached group manager.


Heath Gascoigne (17:25):



Dr. Glenn (17:25):

They have a lot of ideas, and this is the way you change it. You need to influence that and then they’ll change.


Heath Gascoigne (17:33):

So, you’ve got to sit down with these key stakeholders where we call them the difficult ones. So, the lesson there is they could actually be, I think that would be maybe the lesson for newbies coming into this or think, okay, this person’s a little bit difficult, we should get rid of them. But it actually might could be a conversation that you have that could actually be your champion.


Dr. Glenn (18:01):



Heath Gascoigne (18:03):

So probably go back to earlier if the psychology and philosophy books, if you understand people’s behavior and why they think and act a certain way,


Dr. Glenn (18:15):

I turn around so many organizations to just sit down with people, then you get real momentum. Because when I sit down and then they later they see that the input that they gave me is in a plan. They said, oh, you really listened to what they said and then it goes.


Heath Gascoigne (18:35):

On. Yeah. Okay. So, we’re getting into the process now, the process that you follow, and I think you just said earlier, the first step you do is identify the stakeholders and of those stakeholders is who’s on board?


Dr. Glenn (18:50):



Heath Gascoigne (18:53):

And hopefully you’ve got the influencers and if not, and if you’ve identified the influencers and they’re not on board, and this is when the conversation happens,


Dr. Glenn (19:05):

Then had them sit down and say even you are onboarding. And if not, you have to do something else.


Heath Gascoigne (19:11):

Okay. Now this is a good, I want to bring this point up. We live now in the post, I don’t want to say the word pandemic, so I’ll be professionally pandemic. We’re in a post pandemic environment or wilt and everyone is slowly coming back to the office. But there was a period where we all stayed out of the office. And so, I don’t know, but I thought that I was fighting the lone corner here for the culture. I was saying guys, by staying home, it’s all good for the environment and traffic. We don’t have to travel. But what’s getting killed is their culture. Their culture is getting killed. And what’s made us so good so far is funny enough, the culture. And so, if you need to have those difficult conversations, where are you having the difficult conversations? Now if we are mostly online or you’re telling everyone we’ve got to be on site again,


Dr. Glenn (20:08):

You need to invite them because you don’t need to be in office, go to a street restaurant, go to a cafe, just go get out and meet or just go for a walk.


Heath Gascoigne (20:18):

Yeah. Okay. So, ladies and gentlemen, we’ve got, just to remind you, we’ve got a professor here of change management who is not a PhD in change management, also published academic author, part-time professor teaching. It is telling you to come together and have the conversation. But I also, I think you are also saying it’s like a man’s house is his castle. If you sit there to go to a cafe, so not intentionally back to the office, but to an environment, probably a neutral environment where it’s non-threatening or non to advantage of any party. And you can have a non-threatening conversation. Okay,


Dr. Glenn (21:04):

Go to create and you can be open-minded. But my experience also in general is that a lot of people say in our company it should be a culture allowed to speak openly, freely. But my experience is that it’s only allowed for the CEO and top management to speak freely. If someone no adults speak freely, they cut the head off and it’s a bad culture.


Heath Gascoigne (21:31):

Oh yeah. Yeah. I don’t know if you’d call that a toxic culture, but pretty close to it. Yeah. Yeah. You’ve got to walk on eggshells. It’s like what’s good for the but not for me. Yeah, everyone can talk freely. Only us, but not you. Yeah, yeah. No, not good. This


Dr. Glenn (21:52):

Is changing. It’s about culture. You need to it better culture.


Heath Gascoigne (21:58):

Culture. Okay. Alright. Alright. So probably go back to our first point about what the industry is not doing or doing well. Are they cultivating the right culture? Are you generally seeing a I don’t think so. Okay, so why would that be an issue in change management or in transformation? Why would a cultivating not a positive culture being issue? If you’re going to do some form of change, it could be a structural change. You’re going to divest the business, so you’re going to offload some a division or cut of product line or business line, you go, well we’re cutting costs, we’re going to lose some people. So, what


Dr. Glenn (22:38):

If you saying? If you look at what they mentioned earlier about toxic culture, if people are afraid to make mistakes, what they very often see, then you’ll not have a good culture, you’ll not have innovations, you just have setbacks and people will just do what they expected to do and nothing else.


Heath Gascoigne (22:57):

You need.


Dr. Glenn (22:59):

Psychological safety environment. The people feel that they can actually make mistakes.


Heath Gascoigne (23:06):

Okay, okay, let me play that back to you. That was fantastic. So, if you are afraid to make mistakes, so ladies and gentlemen, if you’re afraid to make mistakes, you only get what you paid for, you get what you asked for. And the flip side of that is you get no innovation.


Dr. Glenn (23:22):



Heath Gascoigne (23:25):

And in this day and age, if you want to be competitive, you need to innovate. And so, if you’ve created a culture, people, I think they don’t give enough weight to culture. Full disclosure, I think we talked about that. My major and my MBA was changing management. So, I have a passion from the people side. I go into these big transformations look probably like you and you see they talk about the technology and the process and the new system and the technology and they say, but what about the people? Who’s the people going to be using the process and using the new technology? You don’t even think about them and what’s going to happen. You’re going to get all this new tech and no transformation because you didn’t bring the like you said. Okay, so ladies, gentlemen, so culture is you said the industry, what they’re not doing well, they’re not cultivating the right culture. And the issue of that’s going to be that you only get what you paid for. You’re going to get only what you asked for and you will definitely not get the innovation.


Dr. Glenn (24:23):



Heath Gascoigne (24:24):

Okay, so your competitive advantage of whether you talked about that term before, intellectual capital that you may have paid top dollar for, you’re only going to, I think Steve Jobs said it. He said, you don’t pay smart people to come in and we tell them what to do. You pay for smart people to come in to tell you what to do. Alrighty. Okay. So, your first point you were saying is you identify the influences or the stakeholders and of those influencers get on board. Okay, what’s the next step on your process


Dr. Glenn (24:58):

On that process then you need to actually understand the business process that you want to change. You need to understand, I use lean. You need to understand an organization need to understand what is going to change. Because what we very often see that organization talk about changing the business processes, but then the challenge is if you’re going to change something, you need to understand what you’re going to change. Because my experience is that a lot of companies don’t know their own business process at all.


Heath Gascoigne (25:28):

Oh, okay. Ladies and gentlemen are you hearing that that professor just said that a lot of organizations, and I agree, I’ve seen it many times, they don’t have a good understanding of their own business processes. I think what we’re going to talk about there is I’ve had experience, and I’ve talked about a couple times on here on the podcast where I was asked on a big government change project and the process that we follow, it’s got a few steps and number five is design. After you’ve done what the vision looks like, the governance in this current state and what the change wants to want to realize and then once start at design without understanding any of that. And so, if you don’t understand what you said there, understand your business process, what you do today, then you’re going to struggle. So, the first point you’re saying is pretty much baseline we’ve got understanding what you’re going to change. So that’s number two. You are understanding what is going to change. Okay, so why is that important? They say you start, and you get caught into, as you said earlier, you get according to big projects that have last three or four times they’ve been added and they think, well surely after three or four times you must know what your process is. You’ve just had these consultants come through three or four times.


Dr. Glenn (26:49):

But it doesn’t because, and the management only say people need to work faster, we need to have this logistics going faster. But what is wrong with your logistics today? I don’t know, I just want to have it faster and own shows they don’t know their own business process for the people it is in operations, why you do this, how you do this, but why don’t you do it in another way what this we have tried to tell the management long time ago but maybe not missing those us.


Heath Gascoigne (27:22):

Okay. Yeah. So, there’s an element of from operations to management, there’s a disconnect that they don’t listen. So that can cause a lot of things including resentment from operations that they really don’t want to offer suggestions. I think you probably see the same thing as I think the people best who know what to change are the people who are actually in the business who are actually doing the thing you’re going to change.


Dr. Glenn (27:51):

Thank you.


Heath Gascoigne (27:53):

So, if the management, they listen to them, we’re in a bit of trouble.


Dr. Glenn (27:59):

We see that very often.


Heath Gascoigne (28:01):

Okay. And is that one of the strategies why companies bring in external consultants to be like the third-party voice to say, well it’s not us saying it’s them, listen to them, they’re the experts.


Dr. Glenn (28:18):

And it’s also, but I’ve been in projects where I have resigned because the management isn’t wanted listen to me company for five years, they tried to implement a new ERP system for five years. Five


Heath Gascoigne (28:32):

Is trying to implement a system. Wow. There’s a lot of resistance then.


Dr. Glenn (28:40):

So, if you don’t eat the resources and sit down and talk for the people that need to change the business process and how they work, you’ll never succeed. But the CEO didn’t want to do that. I just said he wanted to push down, but it’ll not help us yet.


Heath Gascoigne (28:59):

Oh wow. I had that issue with the previous client, and I said those words, I said, so you want me to start at number five after not knowing this? And they’d actually tried this project for a year and a half with a couple of big four and then they canned it. I got nowhere. And they called me in and said, we want to do it differently. And I gave them the plan and they said, okay, I like it. And agreed that I like your six steps. Thank you very much. Well, I want to start at number five. You want to do all this? I said, well, you want me to do the same as what the last two guys did. And they said yes. And I said, so that means not doing this other work, we need to do the vision, et cetera. And they said, yeah.



I said, if you give me 20 minutes, I’m going to go get that plan and I’m going to bring it straight back to you. It’s exactly the same plan. And they go, oh no, no, no, no, no. I said, well, if we do the same thing and you expect a different result, I think there’s a term for that. It’s called insanity and they’re, okay, fine, you can do it your way. But we disagree. And then nine months later I gave it back and it was all delivered, and they said, oh wow, thank you. You did. And to what you said earlier, businesses don’t understand the processes and they said, the sponsor said you did the unthinkable, you gave us what we wanted. Thank you. But you also documented the undocumented business. I said, but to your point as well, you said the operational people you want to speak to the people in operations. I said, well exactly, this worked because it was your people who wrote this whole thing.


Dr. Glenn (30:26):



Heath Gascoigne (30:28):

Okay. So, there’s a process. We’re starting with the stakeholders. We’re getting our influencers identified and onboard if need be. We’re meeting on a neutral ground, have the one-on-one conversation. If they’re on board, fantastic. If they’re not, we make some suggestions that maybe we can move people around. We’d obviously want to keep the knowledge there. So, we don’t want to get rid of anyone. That’s probably how they got to that point, the first place. And then the second part is that you want to identify the business process of what happens today. Because a lot of people don’t understand what they do today. So, you want to be very clear on what they do today to understand what you’re going to change. Yep. Yes. Okay. So now you’ve established the baseline. Sorry, go.


Dr. Glenn (31:13):

What you also see that the current business process says one thing, but people in operation work in different way. So, when management come with new business process and the people in operation doesn’t understand why they should work with this way because they have never worked on the business process on the paper.


Heath Gascoigne (31:31):

Yeah, yeah. So, there’s a disconnect, right? So, this is a common problem. There’s a common problem. Executives have a vision or a view how they think it should work, and operations are doing it another way, how it’s actually working. And so, when the senior guys say we’re going to change it, they’re going to change it how they think it’s working today to something else. And the business is going, you’re starting point’s wrong.


Dr. Glenn (31:56):

Yeah. Correctly. Correctly.


Heath Gascoigne (32:00):

And then they go around the houses. Yes. Okay. So how do you align that then you’ve got a disjoint between guys upstairs who have this, no, it doesn’t. It happens this way. And the operations are going, these guys have got no idea here. No idea at all. It doesn’t work that way at all.


Dr. Glenn (32:18):

I always start with a workshop where I have process mapping with both management and people from operation. They need to come together; they need to see and to get the common worldview on how it really is.


Heath Gascoigne (32:32):

Okay, so common worldview, the common world, I’m going to quote you on that one there later. So, this is the common language, right? You’ve established a common language. So, we’re seeing the world in the same perspective from different perspectives, but it’s the same view. So now you’ve got that, you’ve got agreement. What’s next?


Dr. Glenn (32:55):

You start to change the processes hopefully. And to change the process, you need to use the people and operations and you need to use the influencer so you can get momentum to change faster.


Heath Gascoigne (33:08):

It’s not even time. Alrighty. Okay. So, you’ll start implementing those changes. So, you’ve identified what’s changing, then you start making the changes ideally with your influencers, your slash what we call them change champions.


Dr. Glenn (33:23):



Heath Gascoigne (33:25):

Yep. Change champions, change influencers. And now you’ve got some wins on the board. You might have some laggards, some people resistant. Then you might have to get out the carving knife, trim a bit of fat off the sides. There might be a couple of casualties.


Dr. Glenn (33:46):

But my experience in general, when the organization see that you get momentum and they see that the people that was negatively become positively, then the organization change much faster spend time with them. Because my experience also that management say if you don’t have time to do that and want to go, no, the train should go, but the train cannot go if you don’t spend time with the people, it’s negative. No, it’ll come as a backlash per later. You get three times longer time to change.


Heath Gascoigne (34:17):

It. So the analogy that you’re using there is a chain leaving the train tracks, right? That station. And it’s almost like if they’re trying to rush the process and it’s like you’ve got a rubber band on the back and they haven’t released the rubber band, but they want to go, well the rubber bands still attached and it’s going to go back. Yeah. Okay. So, the lesson there is you’ve got to take the time, right?


Dr. Glenn (34:42):



Heath Gascoigne (34:43):

And it is frustrating, and I think that’s probably from the senior management’s perspective, is that they can’t see change.


Dr. Glenn (34:51):

No correctly.


Heath Gascoigne (34:53):

And their anxiety is either time is wasting, or money is wasting, opportunity is getting wasted. And so, they are starting. So no, just give me change. Give me change. And then this is where a project that was looking like it could be successful starts looking like it’s not going to be.


Dr. Glenn (35:13):

Yes, definitely.


Heath Gascoigne (35:14):

So, we had a guest on not long ago, and it’s quite humorous. And he said that when he’d present to the senior management, it’s put the proposal together, then deliver the change. And I would say that tell him the process and say, give me the result. I just want to see the result. And then he gave the result and he said, now what’s the message? But that was the result is the message. So, with this one where they are seeing the change, this is the message is keep going.


Dr. Glenn (35:48):



Heath Gascoigne (35:49):

Keep going. You’ve got momentum, you’ve got the change like a muscle. You’ve seen that you’re using it, or you’re lose it. So, keep going. Yep. Okay. So


Dr. Glenn (36:01):

I used to be working as a president and CEO of several major companies as an interim, CEO. I turn around three, four major companies in Scandinavia. Been great.


Heath Gascoigne (36:13):

Success. It’s


Dr. Glenn (36:14):

Only because I listen to the people on the floor.


Heath Gascoigne (36:17):

Okay? So big lesson their ladies and gentlemen are that you’ve got to listen to the people. And I think it’s almost like one of the guests actually had on recently talked about goal setting theater. It is not listening to the people in a theater as in okay, just listen to them and they’ll be quiet soon, as soon as they’re finished talking. No, listen and take on board. And probably when you’re playing it back, show them how you use what they have provided you. Yes. Yeah, that’s correct. Okay, so alright, so first get people who’s on board. Second is our processes, we’re baselining. Third, we’re making the changes and part of the changes, it’s probably part of the communication there is sharing that, okay, this is where we were before two months ago. This is where we are here. It’s not monumental changes, but it’s changes.


Dr. Glenn (37:11):



Heath Gascoigne (37:12):

Yep. Small changes. Small changes. So, you are communicating the changes.


Dr. Glenn (37:17):

Every day.


Heath Gascoigne (37:18):

Every day. Okay. Because a thing with a communications plan and identifying your stakeholders and how do they like to be communicated to, they want to have a town hall once a week or they want to have an email every day to the senior executives. Or they want to have a face-to-face because they don’t believe you otherwise. And they want to have an email, they want to have a PowerPoint presentation. So, you find the medium and the frequency and then you execute that plan. And so, you’re keeping the communication channels open.


Dr. Glenn (37:49):

All this thing you mentioned you also need to do, but you need to walk around and talk with people daily. If not, you’ll not have the changes. You need to be in the floor daily and talk with people.


Heath Gascoigne (37:59):

And the people need.


Dr. Glenn (38:00):

To see you as a CEO or president, whatever you are. They need to see that you really care. They need to see that you interact with the people. If not, you’ll not succeed either.


Heath Gascoigne (38:11):

Then gentlemen, we’ve got a lot of takeaways here. Professor. I’m writing these all down. So, I’m going to put them in the show notes. Is that the walk and talk? Yes. This is not the, what is it? It’s like the mask and it’s just words. It’s no actions as well. Actually, beating the feet, walking the floor.


Dr. Glenn (38:32):



Heath Gascoigne (38:33):

Good stuff. Why is that important? Because it’s something to the psychology, right?


Dr. Glenn (38:39):

Because people need to understand and that you really care. I’m the former president and CEO of Norway’s largest secondhand retailer called Frex with 60 retail stores around Norway. Whoa. And every, I was traveling in the hall of Norway to meet people. Many times, I thought that, oh this is so much stress to go around and meet people. I really cannot make anything. But when I get the feedback from the people, they really understand, appreciate it. And therefore, also was managed to change the company so quickly because I was consolidating four different regional companies into one unit with almost 2000 employees.


Heath Gascoigne (39:22):

Whoa, okay. Yeah. That’s no small change. This organization here that this client that I’m helping is not quite that big. And it’s one site and this is going to be a challenge and well for you to do 60 stores, four regions and 2000 staff. Nice work. And so, the key there would be.


Dr. Glenn (39:47):

Is to meet the people you need to get around. You need to understand what it is to visit the store. And because when you visit the store, you also get ideas how you can change the retail, how you can change things, become faster.


Heath Gascoigne (40:02):

So, you’re meeting the people. Okay. And you couldn’t do that remotely, right?


Dr. Glenn (40:06):



Heath Gascoigne (40:07):

No. You got to be faced to face, skin on skin, touching hands, meet and greet. Alrighty.


Dr. Glenn (40:15):

One of the largest media corporations at that time is called Orca Media. It was one of the largest media corporations in Europe and in Scandinavia then I was responsible, the consulate Seven. Seven companies with 1500 employees. And then I also had to go around and meet people.


Heath Gascoigne (40:35):

Always the meeting, the meeting the people.


Dr. Glenn (40:37):

You do not sit in a nice big office and believe that you can make anything. If you don’t meet the people, you get another job.


Heath Gascoigne (40:44):

Yes. Okay, ladies and gentlemen, you got that. You’ve got to get out from behind the desk off the screen and then beat the feet and meet the people. Yes. Okay. So now let’s say you’ve delivered the change. The change has been done; you’ve helped embed the change. Well, is it not embedding the change? You’ve met the people, they’ve understood the need they’re doing the new ways of working, the new business model. What is next? Embedding the change.


Dr. Glenn (41:13):

You need to use the technology because you didn’t say anything. Use technology as a tool to achieve your goal and company vision. We need to implement the technology to use it as a tool.


Heath Gascoigne (41:32):

So, the key part their ladies, gentlemen, is if we talk about the core elements of the business, the people, process, technology and data. And in that order people first process done by the people and the technology that is supporting the process and the data that moves through in the technology through the process. So, using the technology as supporting your change as opposed to leading with technology.


Dr. Glenn (42:02):

Because my PhD was, I have developed my own change management model that I call tips.


Heath Gascoigne (42:09):

Tips. You get that one top secret, okay.


Dr. Glenn (42:15):

The chief of technology, either intellectual capital T processes or S for strategy, you need to start with the strategy at the bottom you need to have a solid bottom strategy. Then you need to have the business process, then you need to have the intellectual capital. And on top we just use the technology to achieve our strategy and goal.


Heath Gascoigne (42:38):

Okay, so strategy at the bottom. So that’s the foundation. And then we’ve got the process or intellectual property. Yes. So, process and intellectual property or intellectual property, then process and then the technology at the top.


Dr. Glenn (42:54):

The last it was intellectual capital.


Heath Gascoigne (42:58):

Intellectual capital at the top?


Dr. Glenn (43:01):

No, it was strategy.


Heath Gascoigne (43:05):



Dr. Glenn (43:07):



Heath Gascoigne (43:08):

Process. Yes. Intellectual capital.


Dr. Glenn (43:11):

Intellectual capital.


Heath Gascoigne (43:13):

And then technology. And then technology. Okay. And in like a pyramid shape, we’re trying to, yeah,


Dr. Glenn (43:19):

Just for


Heath Gascoigne (43:20):

One. Okay. And this is the tips framework. Change management framework. Okay. You’re going to have to give me the link. I’m going to put it in the show notes after the call. Alrighty. Okay. And that’s from Professor Glenn. Would we say Holt? Holt? The Norwegian version? Not the New Zealand version. All right. Okay. Okay. Okay. So now we’re using the technology, we’ve got our influencers, our baseline, we’ve communicated, we’ve set the change, we’ve communicated with floor walked. Now we’re using our technology. Is the change finished?


Dr. Glenn (44:06):

No, it’s not. Then you start to build the next generation leaders. Then you establish internal skill where you need to build the next generation of leaders in the company.


Heath Gascoigne (44:19):

And so, the next generation, so why is this important? The next generation of leaders?


Dr. Glenn (44:27):

Because you want to have the organization to develop, to get new perspectives and to see how it’ll develop. If you have the same leaders for 15, 20 years in management, nothing will happen.


Heath Gascoigne (44:40):

Okay. So, you are building a capability of an internal capability. So, the business continually learns and grows. And it’s a conscious decision here. This isn’t one done by luck nor hope. It is intentional for an intentional outcome. And there was probably, although we didn’t say it from the beginning, that was the intention from the beginning will implement change, but we’ll also develop the capability and probably the intellectual capital to enable the company to continue learning and growing.


Dr. Glenn (45:17):



Heath Gascoigne (45:18):

Okay. So, it’s almost like a succession planning for a department or the vision to point out who is the up and comers, who do we need to mentor and who need to bring through to put our arm around to say, okay, this is going to be our next leader to look after them, put a training program together already. So, then we really are building a change capability then.


Dr. Glenn (45:41):

And it’s very important that everyone understand that the team we have today cannot be the same football team that you played tomorrow match with because the competitors and environment is changing. You need to adapt to environment and everything.


Heath Gascoigne (45:57):

Oh, that is perfect there. I talk about this myself a lot, is that the person that you were to get you a certain level is not the same one to get you to the next one. And you just said it there, the team and the organization that you got to get you to there, is there not the same one to get you to there or even to the right because of the way the world is changing right now. So, this is not just said for a message for executives, but also operations is that the guys and operations is where we were before, is the old mask if you like. What is the old body, the old ways of working and the new way requires all those things that the strategy, the process, the intellectual capital and the technology.


Dr. Glenn (46:46):



Heath Gascoigne (46:47):

Okay. Alright. So that’s the big message. The big message is that after our change, we’re identifying our key new leaders and why we need new leaders. Because the old way of operating is not coming back. We need to operate in a new way. And a new way requires a new way of working new people, maybe the same people but new intellectual capital. Yes. Okay. Alrighty. Okay. And now have we finished the change?


Dr. Glenn (47:15):

Now we don’t because it’s very important everyone who is a CEO or a senior executive that understand that the position that they have today is just borrowed at this time. And you can use these people to be mentored, younger generation and the next leaders.


Heath Gascoigne (47:37):

So that’s like going into the board in case the audience puts that, it’s like going into the boardroom and saying, okay guys, you’ve got a lovely title and you’ve got a seat at the table, but that seat is rented. It’s like hard work. You’ve got to pay your dues every day and at the end of the day you’ve got to hand back your seat. So, this is not a permanent seat, this is a temporary seat correctly. Okay. Yes. That could be, excuse me, that could be a hard pill to swallow for some people in the boardroom at the time.


Dr. Glenn (48:07):

Yeah, of course it’s, but this is the only way you can have innovation. It’s the only way the company will prepare in the future.


Heath Gascoigne (48:15):

And that requires the hard conversations and probably what you talked about earlier about the philosophy and the psychology books as why they’re so important.


Dr. Glenn (48:26):



Heath Gascoigne (48:28):

I think some people in our role, or particularly your role might take what the role, the job that they’re doing personally. And there’s some hard decisions or hard facts that would need to be spoken. And it might be a hard pill to swallow for the receiver.


Dr. Glenn (48:48):



Heath Gascoigne (48:49):

So, you need to be like, I think we’ll get onto the third point now, if you could do it all again, these years of experience, you are a professor in change management, author of many articles, publish articles, even in your own framework, former CEO, of big organizations, Scandinavian, I would say also European. You have transformed them great success stories to talk through. If you could do it all again, what would you do differently?


Dr. Glenn (49:28):

I would not necessarily do so much differently. I would just use more time, be more patient.


Heath Gascoigne (49:35):

Okay, more time, more patient. And why you think some cases that you required some more time or too fast or you would’ve got a better result.


Dr. Glenn (49:47):

As the older you become, the more you understand things take time and the younger you are, the more impatient.


Heath Gascoigne (49:55):

So, this is maturity?


Dr. Glenn (49:57):



Heath Gascoigne (49:58):

Okay. So, by having Wiseness, you are more the wiser now,


Dr. Glenn (50:06):



Heath Gascoigne (50:07):

Yeah. Okay. No, I would say the same thing. It would be nice to; I think patience is an underrated skill. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. Okay. I don’t know. I say I’d like more patients, but I probably would like more results faster. Okay. Dr. Glenn, I think we might wrap it up there. I think we’ve got some good, I’m going to play it back to you. Just so the audience has got the wrap up there. We started off with talking about the industry itself. I think we had some learnings there about what they’re doing right and wrong. The key part being that they got to change the transformation is more about the people than it is technology. That’s a starting position. There is a process that you follow baseline first. Understanding the business world, actually, sorry, there’s the stakeholders. Understanding the stakeholders, who’s the influences within those, get them on board.



And there is a part of, and it might be unpopular to talk about it, but meet face-to-face the inconvenience of now hopping in a car or in a bus or in a train to meet face-to-face, which we all used to do in the old days. But you need to do that meet to face, you understand the current processes, the business processes. And there’s a reason why, because organizations don’t really know their current processes today or the guys upstairs have got a different understanding of what happens downstairs. So, your words, you said that we’ve got to be on the common world view. Yes. Yep. So, we’ve got the common world view. We are making changes. So, we’ve got our change champions leading the change. We’re communicating frequently. You said daily we are walking the floor, the walk and the talk. We are visiting the sites as you give the couple of examples of you being transforming the clothing business, there are 60 stores, four regions, 2000 staff. And then you are using technology as the enabler, not the driver.



And with all that we are doing building the capability. So, you are calling out identifying the next generation of leaders because the business and organization you were before is not the same one to keep you going correctly. So, there’s some things that you need to change and then part of that, if it’s number eight or nine, it is that you’ve got with the message, you’ve got to constantly communicate. Yep. Okay. And then your lessons or the takeaway, if you could do it all again, the two things you would like would be to have more time or take more time and have more patience. Yes.



Well, we are my friend, what a journey. We’ve just had 20 years laid down in about an hour of an actual, we’ve had a few professors on here, but not to the degree that yourself there. Professor Glenn, the master, we’ll call you the master, the grand master of change management, his own framework, published author, professor, part-time of many hats that you wear. It’s been a pleasure and an honor as someone who studied change management as well to speak to the master. So, thank you very much. We want to also, later on, I’ll get it from you. You give me the link to where people can, well I’ll put your contact details in the show notes so they can get in touch with you. They want some Scandinavian, or you’ve worked around the world in those different verticals. So, they’ll reach out to you if they’ll go, okay, I like the guy, how this old guy operates. We want to bring him in. Or also we want to get the tips, the tips, frameworks, how they can get a hold of that. And we’ll put that in the show notes, and this will go live hopefully in about a week’s time.


Dr. Glenn (54:03):

Thank you for having me.


Heath Gascoigne (54:04):

My pleasure, my man. Okay, enjoy the green lights, Northern Lights, Northern Lights and your back door. Okay. Alright my man. Alright, we’ll catch you later. Thank you much for coming on. Cheers buddy. Bye.

Heath Gascoigne Business Transformator

Heath Gascoigne

Hi, I’m Heath, the founder of HOBA TECH and host of The Business Transformation Podcast. I help Business Transformation Consultants, Business Designers and Business Architects transform their and their clients’ business and join the 30% club that succeed. Join me on this journey.

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