A Change From Plastic Bags

In 2018 Foodstuffs North Island chief executive Chris Quin said “New Zealanders are not ready to go cold turkey on plastic bags yet.” He cited challenges around finding a suitable replacement stating the science behind providing alternatives was ‘fairly complex’.

In fairness to Chris, making significant changes to a large business is hard work – in fact research tells us the probability of successfully implementing change in any environment can be as low as 30%. Just think about that annual gym membership that you only used for the first two months, or when you tried to implement reduced screen time with the kids.

There are 3 main factors contributing to change success at a personal or organisational level. Understanding how they work together helps you prepare and set the scene for change.

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1.       Capability accounts for 40% of change success. This is defined as the skills, ability, training and resources required to make it happen.

2.       Beliefs account for 30% of change success. This is defined as the attitudes and perceived difficulty that people have about the change.

3.       Readiness accounts for 30% of change success. This is defined as leadership support, need for change, WIFM (what’s in it for me), the change process and overall confidence all shape how ready an organisation is for change.

Chris may have struggled with some aspects of capability (resources) and belief (perceived difficulty) but thankfully his customers were ready for change (with some demanding it!) and the rest of the Foodstuff’s organisation could see the benefit and had the skills to make it happen.

If you are considering making changes in your organisation (or family) see how you rate on each of the contributing factors. Identify your weak areas and create a plan to meet those weaknesses head on.

“Without change there is no innovation, creativity or incentive for improvement. Those who initiate change will have a better opportunity to manage the change that is inevitable.”

William Pollard