E2: Telstra’s Legal

And how they brought their
lawyers on this journey

E2: Telstra’s Legal Innovation

And how they brought their lawyers on this journey

E2: How Telstra Brought Lawyers On Their Transformation Journey With Denise Doyle, Legal Transformation Lead

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How has the legal team at Australia’s largest telco, Telstra, undergone digital service transformation?
On this episode, we chat with Denise Doyle who is the Lead Enablement Lead at Telstra, Australia’s largest Telco company, and leads the legal operations and transformation initative. Prior to joining the legal team at Telstra, Denise led finance transformation at Westpac and NAB – two of Australia’s largest banks – as well as international finance teams with Citibank and GE.
We talk about:
  • Denise’s favourite movie (surprisingly related to transformation)
  • How she got started in the wonderful world of transformation
  • How she helped drive legal transformation at Telstra
  • Empathy – and the impact of transformation on people and how to navigate it
  • The importance of structural and organic approaches to innovation
  • How to procure and implement technology in an enterprise environment
If you would like to connect with the show host or guest you can find them at:
This show would only be possible with listeners like you!
  • If you enjoyed the show, we would love if you could leave us rating or review to help get the word out!
  • If you have a digital transformation story (or know someone who does) feel free to email us at [email protected] – we’d love to hear from you.


[00:00:00] Hey listeners, we’ve got a special extended episode for you today. And if you’re interested in legal transformation or how lawyers can practically get involved in digital service transformation, then this one’s for you. Today’s guest is Denise soil, who is the legal transformation lead at Telstra. And as you can probably tell from a title, she works alongside the legal team to deliver digital service transformation and finding new ways for the legal team to better deliver their service to the rest of the business. 

[00:00:31] Now, prior to joining Telstra, Denise had over 10 years experience in transformation, but in the finance industry, And you’ll hear a little bit about it. In today’s episode, she’s led teams in transforming fleet and equipment finance business at GA banking and finance in Australia’s largest banks in Westpac and NAB, as well as international banks like Citibank on today’s episode, you hear about how to drive legal transformation within an enterprise context, you hear about the power of [00:01:00] empathy in the transformation journey and why it’s so important. 

[00:01:03] And you’ll also hear about how to practically procure. Implant technology, especially as you assess and think about multiple vendors, it’s an episode filled with a lot of good stories. So we hope you enjoy. 

[00:01:20] Hi listeners. Welcome to outside the box podcast, hosted by checkbox. My name is min and beside me, we have a wonderful guest. Her name is Denise Doyle. She is the legal enablement lead at Telstra. Welcome to the show. Thanks man. The podcast is all about digital transformation stories, digital service transformation, and on the theme of stories, we thought we’d start with an icebreaker question, which is what is your favorite story? 

[00:01:45] Whether it be a book or a movie. I wish I had this really great example about automation, but, um, when I was thinking about this question, my favorite movie of all time is the wizard of Oz. Um, insert, laughter. [00:02:00] We need a loft truck. Um, Yeah, I’ve seen it probably a hundred times and I enjoy it just as much now as when I watched it the very first time. 

[00:02:12] Yeah. And I just love the whole story about how, when it transitions, you know, Dorothy goes on that journey of discovery, which kind of fits into what I like about life and. On that journey, she encountered as different people. And then at the end, you know, she’s got this assumption about this wizard and then at the end, it’s like, the wizard is not what she thought it was, which is pretty much how it is when we go on journeys of discovery. 

[00:02:42] And I think the other thing that I really like about the wizard of Oz is. The beginning is in black and white or in, um, what is it? Uh, Sienna color. And it’s all about her in the tornado. And then she goes through this elaborate dream and, and then it’s like, was it real or was it a dream at the end? So I [00:03:00] guess that, um, That’s what I love about it. 

[00:03:02] So here I am, as I said, a middle-aged woman and her favorite movies, the wizard of laws, nothing to be ashamed about. Oh, well, now, now there you go. It’s going out. So, um, today we, uh, we thought we bringing in because we think you’re an amazing. Uh, person first and foremost, and we think that your journey is really, really interesting. 

[00:03:22] So I’m setting the bar pretty high. Thanks, man. No pressure. There you go. How did you end up in the wonderful world of transformation? What was your journey to, to, to here today? So my wonderful world, ah, sorry. My wonderful journey to transformation started probably 20 years ago, year 2000 here, the Sydney Olympics, I was working for a global bank and I was working for a very interesting woman. 

[00:03:46] And um, doing bits and pieces and she started to give me more and more things to do back in those days, it was called total quality management. And, um, [00:04:00] I started working on things that related to that. And then I wound up starting my journey. Uh, my quality journey. I got my green belt. I got my black belt, uh, started to deliver a lot of different projects in that organization. 

[00:04:14] Which was a very good place to learn because they, it was a very fast paced organization. And then after 10 years I wanted to do something different and I started to do little bits and pieces. I did some time at NAB. Um, I went to GE and then I went to Westpac and then I decided I needed a new challenge. 

[00:04:36] And the Telstra role came up. Most of my career has been in financial services. So I’ve worked in either a bank. Or in a fleet. Uh, when I was at GE, I worked in the fleet and equipment finance, which was a challenge. Um, then I moved to Westpac where I started to work with finance, which was an another challenge. 

[00:04:54] Cause I knew what numbers look like, but that was pretty much it. Um, and then the [00:05:00] challenge came up to work with lawyers and I was like, Hmm, I’m ready for something new. Now you mentioned total quality management. You said that was an old phrase. What’s the modern phrase of total quality management. There are still people out there that know what. 

[00:05:12] Lean six Sigma is back in those days, it was six Sigma. I’m not even quite sure lean was my mainstream back then. So I would say it’s the closest thing to BPM business process management might be another one, lean six Sigma. Yup. And so the Greenbelt and the black that you mentioned is related to that qualification around lean six. 

[00:05:34] Yeah. That’s awesome. Yeah. And you’ve worked across quite a few different verticals. You know, you mentioned GE uh, the money industry, you mentioned, um, you know, NAB and Westpac and for our listeners who are in the international audience, and then Westpac are two of the largest banks in Australia of the four largest banks in Australia. 

[00:05:52] Um, and then obviously tell Chanel largest telco telco in Australia. So what has been sort of that consistent. Theme, like, how are you able to [00:06:00] transition across this vertical so seamlessly? Like what, what, what is it about your role that has allowed you to do that? I think for me is I bring to the table vast experience or depth of experience in transformation and change. 

[00:06:15] Um, when you are, when you are good at transformation, it doesn’t matter what you’re dealing with. You can deal with. Manufacturing, you know, widgets, you can do, you know, even in, in finance processes are still sort of widgets, you know, the, the way that they pull the numbers together is no different to how a machine and the processes. 

[00:06:37] And as long as you have that depth of understanding of process and re-engineering, you can apply it anywhere. Right. And that’s pretty much how I’ve. Run my career. I wanted to make sure that when I started my transformation on my quality journey, that I had a good foundation, because even though I spent majority of my career in [00:07:00] banking, Or financial services. 

[00:07:02] I didn’t necessarily set out to do that. That that’s good. Hmm. So, so let’s talk a little bit more about that transformation you’re talking about. There’s a lot to it. There’s a lot to unpack. Um, I want to start with, um, in our listeners are typically individuals or teams. We’re thinking about the challenge, like overcoming some of those challenges around transformation. 

[00:07:19] So for someone who is listening and thinking, man, I’m a lawyer, I’m an accountant. I’m thinking I really want to change the way. Things are done. What are common challenges that you’ve experienced or seen that, you know, kind of other precursor for transformation? I think, you know, organizations want to do transformation. 

[00:07:43] Um, they’re not quite sure what transformation necessarily means or what they want to transform. You know, they, they have ideas because, you know, People will complain about processes or things will fall over or they’ll have a lot of errors, for [00:08:00] example. Um, and now we have, we’ve got to fix it. And how do we fix it? 

[00:08:06] If I think back when I joined Telstra, um, they had varying degrees of innovation within the legal team. And, um, one of the first things that I looked at when I joined was okay, how do we make decisions? And. You know, I got asked 10 people got 10 different answers as you do. Yep. So I suggested that we run, uh, an activity data collection exercise. 

[00:08:32] And as you can imagine, asking lawyers to keep track of their time in a corporate team was. Are you nuts? Yeah. Um, but I was pretty, I spent an awful lot of time on the change management and the communication so that every individual that participated, understood why we were doing it. And it wasn’t an exercise to understand anything more than how they spent their time. 

[00:08:54] And we finished that exercise, which gave us a good view as to where the lawyers were spending their time. [00:09:00] And at that time, um, Telstra was launching its T 22 strategy. And the organization was moving to agile and we needed to come up with a way that, um, the lawyers could support the business. And we were able to do that partly because of that data, because we understood where the biggest. 

[00:09:20] Pain point, what were the biggest amount of time was being spent. But then we also were able to quickly pivot to a, um, new way of working in that we had to come up with an online version, so our clients could come through an online channel. And we had an innovation forum that was started before I joined the, the organization. 

[00:09:40] And that group was already looking at, you know, your intake and your triage. And we were able to pivot that group to come up with a minimum viable product to create an intake so that the clients could, um, come through an online channel. And we actually did that in six weeks. So, um, we were ready to then [00:10:00] support the business as they transitioned into this new way of working. 

[00:10:03] I think when we started, there was an understanding that that’s where the organization was going, but, um, it probably wasn’t as. No, it wasn’t the driver. I guess when I started that activity data collection, a question that I have is, you know, you mentioned doing transformation at Telstra and moving into a new way of working with agile. 

[00:10:27] So what were some of the challenges that you faced as you kind of worked with and led this legal team to, to pivot and move and completely change the way that they were delivering the service? What were some of the challenges that you faced as part of that process? So some of the challenges were that. 

[00:10:41] Some of the lawyers had a good understanding of what agile meant because they were working in projects that were running in an, in an agile way. So, um, I had some that, that understood it and knew how it worked. And then I had, uh, probably a bigger portion, had no exposure to it. The way that [00:11:00] agile would. 

[00:11:01] And the way a lawyer works, the immediate compliment is not right. There is not there. So you have to create that. So what I, so what we did was we focused on those individuals that had experienced, and we talked about their experiences and we ran some retros. What went, what worked well in that project? 

[00:11:18] What didn’t work well, and we came up with kind of a menu. I created this, uh, agile menu that the lawyers could follow. So it talked about the different components of an agile project. So what is a sprint? What is a retrospective? How do I participate in this? How do I make sure that the advice that I’m providing. 

[00:11:38] Gets, uh, on the table at the right time, et cetera. So we created a journey for them. Um, and then we also started a agile network within, within the, the legal team. So those that were more experienced in it became like agile champions and helped others through it. And I think that another challenge was. 

[00:11:57] They wanted to be [00:12:00] clear that when an agile project runs, they didn’t necessarily need to be in the project from go to woe, but there were points within the project that they needed to be involved. So for example, when they were talking about new products or new services, the legal team were involved in those discussions. 

[00:12:15] So one of the challenges was making sure that they knew when to be in what to do discussions and implied in that kind of, and I’m presuming when you say that, The lawyers were in collaboration with other users. Is that, is that right there? Yes. So they were in collaboration with the business and the business teams that they were supporting were also on this new journey of agile. 

[00:12:36] If you think about technology. Yeah, they were probably more versed in it because they had been on agile existed in, in software development and technology longer than it did in, in, uh, in operational or support services. They. Tapped into those, those networks across, across the group. That’s really interesting. 

[00:12:53] Cause we, you know, we often think that transformation has to be a sort of start to end journey where the [00:13:00] knowledge worker or the person who has a particular expertise needs to be high touch the whole process, which really is, it’s not going to be realistic for a lot. Let’s be real here within a corporate environment. 

[00:13:08] They’re doing their BAU tasks. Most of the time and innovation really makes up a minority of what they’re able to deliver. Having said that, though, it sounds like from what you’re saying, their involvement really is at key value points in that kind of development cycle. Is that right? Exactly. I’m a big believer that when you are embarking on a transformation, you have to get buy in from the, from the decision makers. 

[00:13:33] So you have to ensure that the people who are running the show. Are buying into what you’re selling them, but you also then have to bring people on a journey and to help you do that. One of the ways I find to do that as to find the people that get what you’re trying to do and get them involved very early on, and then they will help because they are then out there promoting. 

[00:13:54] What you’re trying to do and they’ll want to help because they are like at the [00:14:00] forefront of what’s being delivered and then they, you turn them into super users or champions because they’ve been with on the change journey from the very beginning. And I think those are two things that are very important in any transformation, if you don’t have buy-in from above. 

[00:14:15] But when I say above, it’s gotta be people that are making the decisions. And you’ve got to have, you know, the people that are doing the work or processing involved in what you’re trying to change at an organic level from the bottom up. Exactly changes. Definitely a top down and a bottom up. And if you don’t look at what you’re trying to deliver, you could probably not be as successful as you would like to be. 

[00:14:40] I mean, a lot of organizations will think of transformation from a top down perspective and say, look, we’ve got this nailed from a strategy perspective, but then what, what is lacking is the organic aspect, right? And, and, and, you know, teams are left, scratching their heads, trying to figure out where do I turn to? 

[00:14:54] Who do I actually find and how do I get them involved? Do I. Do I ask everybody to get involved? Do [00:15:00] I only ask a subset of people that get involved? Do I look for people who are technically able or do I just find people who are available? So for the teams, we’re thinking about how to actually start nurturing organic track of power users. 

[00:15:12] What, what advice would you give to them? I think there’s an element of going out to everybody because not everybody will respond. I do find with lawyers though, that when you ask for feedback, you’ll get feedback. Um, so just be mindful of that. Um, but I think that you’ll get the people who are interested and that’s what you want. 

[00:15:33] You want to find the people who are interested in what you’re doing. You can also, another Avenue is to go out and talk to people, go out and find, you know, the, the individuals again, who are in the process or who were in the department or the, whatever, the area that you’re trying to change and speak to them. 

[00:15:51] Because whilst we inherently are not. Open to change. There are always reasons [00:16:00] why we are reluctant to change, and you’ve got to understand what that re where that reluctance is based. And then if you understand where the reluctance is coming from, you can address it. So if I think back in, you know, when I was doing re-engineering of some pretty big processes, the roadblocks that I would come across as people didn’t want to take meetings with me because. 

[00:16:19] Do you know, Oh, she’s gonna make me redundant. My role is going to be made redundant. And so I quickly had to assure them that that was not the end goal. The end goal was to make them more productive so that they could take on more or do different work. Um, and then once they understood that they then would participate and you got some valuable information and data out of those individuals, because they were in the, in the weights, they were, uh, they were doing it day in and day out. 

[00:16:46] And they were very open then about telling you what was wrong with it. Yeah. And then as you start to deliver pieces, you can see the light bulbs or the Penny’s starting to drop with people. They, they get it. They’re like, Oh, [00:17:00] I don’t have to do that crap work anymore. Now I’ve got, I can do this entire process that used to take me three days by. 

[00:17:07] Pressing a button because we’ve done robotic automation, process automation. We’ve changed their world. If I think back to one example that we did in, uh, in Westpac, there was a process that was done at the half year and the full year and Westpac, as everyone knows, their financial year runs one October to 30 September. 

[00:17:27] And when they were doing half year stuff at generally landed around Easter. So there were people in certain processes that unfortunately weren’t. You know, it was difficult to take leave at that time. And by reduce, by looking at some of the processes and applying robotics, pres, we were able to reduce the amount of time spent on those processes. 

[00:17:44] And we were able to reduce the amount of rework on those processes. And then that allowed people to, you know, maybe not take all of the Easter long weekend off, but they could start to take more. And that was, you know, a couple of people, but, you know, that was a big impact. Right. So they could then [00:18:00] spend time with their families in a period where everyone else has taken a break. 

[00:18:03] Wow. There’s a real human element. Sounds like, and that’s what you have to find the human element. You know, most people understand why organizations undergo transformations because they need to. Yeah, you look at blockbuster, they need to progress with the times or not exist. And so there are very significant reasons why an organization would transform and, you know, I’m always been a believer I’d rather want, I want to be in an organization that exists as opposed to one that doesn’t right. 

[00:18:33] And you mentioned the human element being really important to look because, and it comes back to what you mentioned earlier around finding advocates. Well finding people who will really drive it from organic levels. And you mentioned that the best way to do that, it’s actually to just talk to people, right? 

[00:18:46] And that’s, that’s time consuming and that’s something that takes effort. And I think that’s not something that can be bypassed easily because the human element is probably the most valuable way to get all co not coerced, [00:19:00] but influence people to bring them on that journey. Am I right in saying that or. 

[00:19:04] Definitely. And you have to, um, you, um, I’m not saying you have to become their best friend, but you have to make it. You have to take an interest in them as well. Yeah. They have to, you want them to feel comfortable? And you want them to get where you’re going and what you’re trying to do. And you know, you don’t want to just plunk down a project plan and go, right. 

[00:19:24] This is what we’re doing. You want to actually have a conversation? Like, how was your weekend? How are your kids, you know, make it human, throw that human element into it. Yeah, totally agree. You’ve obviously worked in different verticals prior to Telstra. You’ve got, you know, Westpac, NAB, you know, in the bank industry or GE, um, and you’ve led transformation in different ways. 

[00:19:46] What are some other challenges that you’ve faced prior to transformation? Um, you know, in particular working with different knowledge, experts, people with particular ways of working, were there any common challenges that you faced? If I think back on, you know, [00:20:00] very early on when I first started this journey, um, I learned, uh, Lessons that I will never ever forget. 

[00:20:08] Uh, and even to this day, you know, I’ll be in a situation I’m like, Nope, not doing it that way. Um, if I think back when I was at a global bank city bank, way back is going back some time now, um, we were offshoring the call center from Brisbin to Manila. And some of the challenges we had there was that, as I said, you know, you want to reassure people that the process is not to make them redundant. 

[00:20:40] Well, if we’re offshoring a call center, that was pretty clear. So when as a leadership group, when we were working through what that was going to look like, we spent an awful lot of time. On the change management component. And, and, um, how could we harness the experience of those individuals yet know that at [00:21:00] the end of a particular point, that those individuals were going to be leaving the organization or have a different role within the organization. 

[00:21:06] And we came up with a plan to. Yeah to play on that experience and that knowledge, they, you know, they were the knowledgeable individuals and we came up with a plan to use those individuals to teach and to train and to skill up the new team. And so, you know, we had some pretty young individuals who were. 

[00:21:24] Very good call center operators spending, you know, months at a time in the Philippines training up the group of individuals that were gonna take their job. And, um, you know, I w won’t say we didn’t have any challenges, but at the end of the day, that was a pretty successful piece of work. And I look back and I think of those times when we were sitting in meeting rooms as a leadership group and going over and over and over the same information and thinking, well, If I look back now, those discussions were, were vital and critical to the success of that project. 

[00:21:59] So [00:22:00] successful. I, um, I remember our leader at the time. He said that when they had made the announcement, there were generalists out the front waiting to speak to individuals as they came in for their shifts. And the journalists were apparently disappointed because no one had anything negative to say. So that’s a Testament that, uh, The change was pretty, pretty successful. 

[00:22:21] That’s huge. And I’m sure are listeners who are thinking about doing similar things around, you know, we, we talk about transformation affecting three areas, people process, and technology, and the people, part of it being obviously very human and, and you just mentioned, uh, obviously a very delicate and sensitive, um, transition that an organization needs to go through. 

[00:22:41] How does one. Or how does a team or an organization even get to a point where no one is seeing anything bad? Like, how do you, how do you keep that positive energy throughout something, which is, you know, obviously the sunsetting moment for, for a particular team, how do you, how do you do that? I think some of the ways that we did it, as I said, we discussed and discussed and discussed and came [00:23:00] up with every risk and we had a mitigant for each of those risks and understanding. 

[00:23:05] What was the best course of action, not was the first course of action, but what was the best course of action? And I think having an element of empathy is very important as well, especially when you’re in a transformation role, you really do need to have empathy for the people that you’re you’re working with and how they’re going to respond and how they’re going to, to do what you need them to do, or to give you the information. 

[00:23:28] Do you think that empathy can be a learned skill? Good question. Um, I had a feeling that’s what you were going to ask me. I think if there’s a willingness, I think it can be learned. And if it’s put into practice, then maybe yes. But there has to be a willingness on the individual, because if I think back, you know, I think back to when I started this journey and, and the woman that I worked with who got me interested in this quality. 

[00:23:58] Six Sigma world. [00:24:00] She gave me two pieces of advice. And one piece of advice she gave me is you have to understand, you have to put yourself in the place of the individual that you’re trying. That is roadblocking you and understand why they’re roadblocking you. And so I’ve always tried to, to do that when I’m in a situation where I’ve got someone who’s not quite there or who doesn’t get what we’re doing or who’s struggling. 

[00:24:24] And I try to put myself in that position. And that takes a lot of times sometimes because when you’re creating messages, you want to make, you know, you want to create those messages that are going to answer the questions for everybody. And if you’ve got someone who’s an outlier, You want to make sure those messages resonate with them as well? 

[00:24:42] So, It’s a long way to get to your question to answer your question, but I think it depends on the individual, whether or not empathy can be learned. Well, I mean, from what you’ve said, it sounds like as long as one is willing to put themselves in the position of the other person, there’s hope [00:25:00] that that can actually understand what they’re going through. 

[00:25:01] I mean, that’s the very essence of empathy, right? Oh, exactly. And one of the things that I’ve always tried to do even as a leader is if I have to have a conversation with, uh, a team member that’s. Not one of the better conversations I always try to think about, okay, how will I be? And how will I react if I were to receive these messages, sometimes you get it right. 

[00:25:24] Sometimes you, the individual just will never accept, but you know, trying to have a spin on or not, not spin, that’s probably not the right word, but to have. You know, a view as to how would I take this? How would I respond to this kind of, I think helps you formulate how you respond, how you deliver. 

[00:25:44] Absolutely. And I think the listeners, who’ve just heard that, that there’s a lot of hope to know that being empathetic. Can be exercised as long as we put ourselves in the position of the other person. But it sounds like also what we discussed before it is a time consuming process. It takes effort, it [00:26:00] takes emotion. 

[00:26:01] There’s a certain level of investment you need to make to, to, to emulate that person’s life. And then that’s the most effective way to then get them on board to the change that you’re about to go through the transformation Mexico through exactly. Now coming back to challenges. Are there any other challenges that you faced, you know, doing transformation in general that, you know, our listener might be faced with in, in, in light of a journey that they’re about to embark on? 

[00:26:26] So if I think about robotics process automation, when I first heard it and I was like, what’s that? Yep. Sounds cool. Um, and when I got exposed to it and I saw what it was, I got really excited about it because it. Joined to, uh, my loves of technology and process, uh, and being able to automate processes. And I remember having a conversation with my boss, uh, at the time. 

[00:26:52] And I was like, you know, we’ve got a robotics process automation, you’ve got to have a look at this it’s it can change, [00:27:00] it can change our lives, you know, significantly. And he’s like, okay. And he had a look at it and he’s like, yep, that’s great. Um, What do you want to do with it? And I was like, let’s run a POC, let’s run a proof of concept. 

[00:27:11] And one thing that quickly came out of those conversations was the fact that no one else was really doing it in the organization. Um, technology was not across it yet. And, um, so we had to have a lot of discussions with individuals across the organization, too. To even get them on board and to understand what we were trying to do. 

[00:27:37] Um, but once we did that proof of concept with one process and the gains that we were able to produce out of that, that then helped those conversations. But I remember towards the end of that project, um, you know, policies had been written around. Process automation. There were more vendors across the organization being used [00:28:00] more and more departments were getting it involved in it. 

[00:28:03] And it was actually a colleague of mine from another department that introduced me to it. And she had said, yeah, have you heard about this? And she said, you’ll love it. Cause it’s process. And I’m like, no, kept me in touch. Yeah. So, um, you know, when you’re trying to do something that is really, really new, you know, th that brings on its own. 

[00:28:23] It’s whole set of challenges. But I think back, you know, if I think about some of the lessons that I’ve learned over the. Over the years and the different pieces of transformation or the different projects that I’ve delivered is one of the things that came out of that was the importance of governance frameworks. 

[00:28:38] And if you speak to any of my colleagues, uh, at Telstra, you know, in the legal team that they’ll say, yep, Denise is really good about governance frameworks. Yep. Because they’re important, you know, they put structure and they put, when you are transitioning from a, from a project to business, as usual, you want to make sure that that structure is still in place. 

[00:28:56] And, um, That it’s, those new processes are [00:29:00] supported. And that was one of the things that I, the importance of that I learned was in that piece of work. Yeah. Can I drill down on the governance part? I want to understand, because a lot of the feedback that is kind of given where new processes introduces too much structure can kill innovation. 

[00:29:19] Too much structure can quench, uh, you know, minds from thinking outside the box. But, um, you know, And you and I have had conversations in the past about this governance really is not in opposition to it. But what would you say to someone who, who has that fear, that governance, the word or the concept might actually be a hindrance to a transformation. 

[00:29:40] So I think if you think of governance and when you’re creating a governance framework, you just want to have, um, goalposts, which the process will be. Guard rails is a good example, a good term. Yeah. You want to have some guard rails around what the process can and can’t do or [00:30:00] what you can and can’t do in this space because people, once they understand, like, I, I think back to when I first started and I was doing process mapping, you know, and, and I would facilitate discussions around, um, You know, I’d have a process and I would do an assay as in a, in a future state. 

[00:30:20] And, and the amount of time that took the most was the scope. You know, what is the scope of our presence? What’s our start point. What’s our end point, because once we define the start and end point, that’s the space that we will work within and governance, frameworks are similar to that. It, it kind of supports what can and can’t be done and it makes it clear up front. 

[00:30:40] So that you don’t spend an awful lot of time, blue skying, something that’s never going to happen because the risk team are never going to agree to it, or it’s not compliant because it doesn’t meet the values of the organization or aligned to the values. Yeah. So my advice would be, don’t be afraid of governance. 

[00:31:00] [00:30:59] Frameworks don’t think that they can hinder, but in some aspects I think they can compliment. So if I think about another example, With the legal team when we were moving to, um, our new operating model, which, um, was part of the, um, the ways of working agile, um, we created business rules and those business rules. 

[00:31:24] We’re not there to dictate to how the teams were going to work. It was more around providing the teams, uh, a playbook, maybe around what they could and how they could do things as opposed to. Nothing. Yeah, nothing. You, you then have to pull people back, but if you create guardrails, people are pretty clear on what the scope is that they can move within. 

[00:31:49] So I’m not necessarily a believer that they hinder innovation. I think they can help. And like I said, when you are transitioning to a [00:32:00] business as usual, they help support that and provide structure around that change. Right. And governance frameworks. Will look different, I think, depending on the organization, but what factors should teams be thinking about when they’re thinking about putting a governance structure together? 

[00:32:17] So, one thing that I, um, did recently was a change governance framework. And, um, when I was creating that framework, I used how we currently worked. So I didn’t want to drastically change and make this an honorous task. I worked through. Our existing operating rhythms. I worked through how our existing teams worked and I put through, um, checkpoints for example, at various levels. 

[00:32:46] But I really wanted in that framework that the change component to be done by the, by the grassroots, by the people, you know, the, the people that are doing, doing the work day in and day out, not that [00:33:00] leaders don’t do work, but the ones that are into the detail and the big pieces of work. And I remember when I presented that piece of work and some of the feedback that I got was they liked the fact that we were pushing the decisions on what we were going to work on down, as opposed to. 

[00:33:17] Up. And then I created that senior level as an oversight. So they had oversight of what was going on. They were there to clear roadblocks. They were there to clear issues, but they weren’t there to make decisions unless they needed to. Right. So you’re saying that that kind of execution level was at the grassroots as opposed to being at what would be like a steering committee at a senior level. 

[00:33:39] And having that be detached from the organic level. Yep. And you mentioned, um, the, the POC. So jumping a little bit back, you mentioned POC and validating particular ideas as part of transformation. And what you implied was that that is almost key to getting buy-in for further. Innovation. So how would [00:34:00] one go about, let’s say I’m someone within a team, let’s say a legal team, which is very similar to the, to the, your context. 

[00:34:06] It is your context actually right now. And, uh, how would I even begin to think as a lawyer of approaching a PAs or an MVP? Like, I think there’s a challenge. I want to overcome that, but how do I even, how do I even approach it? The first thing that you should be clear on is the pro the problem you’re trying to solve. 

[00:34:25] And. You have to communicate that. So this is the problem. This is why it’s a problem. This is what if we could do, if we fix that problem. Um, I find that sometimes people go to conferences or tech fests, for example, and they find these shiny new technologies and they come back and like, Oh, this is fantastic. 

[00:34:46] We have to have this piece of technology. And it’s like, okay, well, that’s great, but what’s the problem we’re trying to solve. What’s the problem that, that technology is going to solve. And it’s like one component of a larger process. And, um, that’s a [00:35:00] scary thing to do because when you’re in a process space, You have to understand the end to end process. 

[00:35:08] A lot of times we don’t, when we are, when we are doing a process, we know our process, but we’re not necessarily, um, understand what the upstream or the downstream of that processes and changing one component can throw the whole thing out. So my advice is to be clear on what you’re trying to solve. And to understand at least at a high level, what you think the benefits are going to be. 

[00:35:33] Because when you start to say to, you know, if I think of myself and my team, if some, one of my team members came to me and said, you know, this is the problem, Denise, and this is why it’s a problem, and this is how we can solve it. And by doing this, this is the result we’re going to get. I’m like, tell me more. 

[00:35:51] But if you came to me and said, this is a technology that we have to have. Okay. Well, why? And I think people can be. [00:36:00] I’m inclined to retrofit those pain points, depending on how shiny the tool is. And, you know, look at something and say, Hey, look, this looks amazing. We could apply it to this, this, this, and that’s a fine approach where, you know, one takes a tool and applies it to pain points, but the subtlety is, are we forcing the tool into those pain points or is it really the right fit? 

[00:36:21] Or are we, you know, can we find a better solution for those pain points that we’re not. Immediately seeing exactly. And I think if you don’t understand, or you don’t have the data around why those are pain points and where those pain points exist, you can run into the situation where you’re buying. As you said, a piece of technology to fit in, or you’re buying a piece of technology that you want to fit your processes into. 

[00:36:45] And that’s why if. When I’m doing pieces of work or looking at particular processes, I like to do a current state and a future state first, so that everyone on that, in that group understands [00:37:00] what the current state is and what the future state is. And then out of that, you start to create your requirements and what I call deal breakers, or, you know, well deal breakers. 

[00:37:09] If I’m dealing with a vendor, these have to have these five or 10 things. And if you can’t meet those 10 things on. There’s no point me going any further, but let’s dive into it because what, what you’re describing is what we kind of talked about in the pre-interview, which was, uh, around how to actually procure what you know, and think about technology as, as a means to solve certain pain points within the organization. 

[00:37:32] And I know for a fact there are teams. And individuals listening to this podcast who are definitely thinking about, Hey, I see this technology on the market. I’m used to sort of just putting it on the credit card or going through procurement and purchasing it. But, you know, interesting enough, you’ve gone through a very systematic approach to procuring technology. 

[00:37:51] So maybe for the benefit of listeners, can you let me just share a little bit about your experience of walking through something like that, and then maybe the principles around how someone can even [00:38:00] begin to think about procuring technology in a systematic manner. So similar to what I said, current state, map it out, identify all the pain points, the roadblocks, then get that same group of people to come into a room and start to say, okay, what could this process look like? 

[00:38:16] And then once you get that future state process, you can start to then understand or pick out what your requirements are in that process. So if we’re going to apply technology over this process, what are the requirements we need that technology to be able to do? So, for example, um, if I’m doing a matter management system, And I’m going to have intake. 

[00:38:34] I want to be able to configure that matter form to meet the needs of my people. I don’t want to be forced into a matter of form that the organization has said, this is how we do matters. So you, you create those requirements out of those, those future state. And then you start to. Have a comment, you know, if you’re in an organization, you have to have a conversation with your technology people. 

[00:38:56] Cause you have to understand is it’s cloud, [00:39:00] um, based technology. Okay. In your organization, there are some banks that still, I think are tussling or. Yeah, rustling with the fact that, you know, can we use cloud and you know, uh, banks have to have, and telcos have to, if you’re going to deal with certain customers have to have data held in Australia so we can have a cloud. 

[00:39:19] It’s got to be solely ours and the data’s held in Australia. It doesn’t go off shore. Those are what I’m calling the roadblocks are the deal breakers that if an organization that you’re thinking of using can’t meet, there’s no point demoing and getting people excited about something that it’s not going to happen. 

[00:39:35] Right. But, um, and then once you have your requirements and you have your deal-breakers, then start to look at the market and say, okay, who out there can do what we want them to do and invite them in and invite them into demo. Um, One piece that I did recently, I had the executive level involved in that, and that was good because it was a learning [00:40:00] curve for them. 

[00:40:00] Um, some of them had never been in an RFP before, and some of them had not been in, in an RFP at that detail, but I brought them on the journey. So we started very high level. These are our requirements. This is the individuals that are going to come in and we demoed and did we tend on say 10 of them? And then we had a conversation about what we liked and what we didn’t like. 

[00:40:23] And then we, now that downfield down to six, I think, and then we did a deeper dive and we brought more people in to see the technology and we got their feedback. We then narrowed the field down to three. And then again, we did sort of mini. Um, proof of concepts with them, you know, can we see what this looks like? 

[00:40:41] And can we see what that looks like? We then got them to go into the deeper detail of the technology requirements. So, um, you know, how the software is built, et cetera. Then we narrowed the field down to two. And I think when we narrowed the field down to two, there was a [00:41:00] suggestion that we go and do something else. 

[00:41:01] And I’d been on this journey with these guys for almost a year. And I was like, wow, let’s just make a decision. Whether we go a or we go B, it’s not going to be the wrong decision. It’s just going to be different. Yeah. Um, and the reason I did that is because we were also running out of runway to implement, you know, I had wanted to have it in before a certain date. 

[00:41:20] So if we were going to do that, we had to make a decision and they agreed and they made it, we had a conversation about it and we made a decision and out of that, then the commercial started and all of that. But it, if you put the effort in upfront, When you’re delivering and not answering a lot of questions, you know, you’re, you’re implementing, you’re not going, uh, how’s this going to work? 

[00:41:44] What are we going to do here? Those questions or that feedback, or those requirements will come out in those sessions. And you just got to make sure that you capture them and you’ll log them. Yeah, because then when you’re starting to create your implementation plan, you want your software vendor to be fully across that, [00:42:00] but don’t underestimate the value that an RFP, right? 

[00:42:03] And so you mentioned requirements, you know, that future state, you mentioned where you think our, what could be and then reverse engineering, what are the requirements needed from a potential technology vendor that could fit into that? One of the challenges that. I often see is that sometimes those requirements, particularly for a future state can all really be a must haves to the point where there may not actually be a vendor who can satisfy that. 

[00:42:29] And I’m sure there are teams listening who have gotten to that point and said, well, we’re either, we’re really sure about our requirements and we want all these things to be ourselves, or we really have no idea at all. And so we’re just going to say these are all must haves and then it becomes a very disappointing. 

[00:42:45] Process. What, what advice would you give to teams thinking about requirements in that, in that fashion? If you have an experience where you come out and all of your requirements are must haves, there’s no could haves or should haves. My there’s a very simple tool that [00:43:00] you can use and it’s called the five whys. 

[00:43:02] And you just keep asking why is this a must have why, but why? And you’ll find that well, is that really a must or could it be a should right. So that’s one way of doing that. And it’s very simple, you know, um, to conduct a five why’s exercise is just basically to keep asking why until you get to the root cause. 

[00:43:22] Right. But you can also use that to get to, is it really a must? Yeah. Totally get it. And that I think requires a certain level of self empathy, like to understand that, you know, I actually don’t need all of these as mass. I can convert some of these to sherds includes or even won’ts and, and what you’re kind of alluding to is sort of that Moscow method that, um, people go about for the requirements. 

[00:43:46] So we’ll have that in the show notes for listeners, if you’d like to read up more up on that. Um, and on that note are, so you’ve mentioned sort of that procurement method that. A team could go through for procuring technology, but thinking about how to [00:44:00] address transformation, we also did touch on process and people. 

[00:44:03] Um, so thinking maybe to the process side of things with Travis talked to as much, how can teams think to reinvigorate rehydrate their processes to address new use cases or new ways of delivering service? Um, I’m a big believer in I’m a visual person. So, um, if you show me a process map, I can quickly understand pain points and roadblocks and handoffs, et cetera. 

[00:44:31] So my advice would be to document the process and then document the process in the way you want it to run. Right. So that you can then see the differences and to make sure that. In your future state, you haven’t eliminated or, or reduced anything that that needs to be there. Um, and then once you’ve been able to look at the differences, you can then start to say, okay, well, in this current state is taking, you [00:45:00] know, there’s 35 steps in this process in the future state. 

[00:45:04] We’ve reduced it actually to 10. So you’ve got a 25 step. Savings there, which is going to equate to some level of productivity, some time save. Um, and that’s a way to, to get people, to take notice of what you’re doing and why the change or making the changes will benefit not only you and your process and the process that you’re thinking about, but the organization, because if you reduce someone’s time that they spend on doing something. 

[00:45:33] They can take on more and they can generally then either, you know, they might have time to participate in a project or an innovation, um, initiative, and that gets people excited, or it might be that, um, The organization is undergoing some change and more work is coming down the pipeline for them. So in order for them to, to be able to sustain that level of productivity, they’ve got to get rid [00:46:00] of, they’ve got to reduce what they’re currently doing so that they can take on more. 

[00:46:04] And that’s one way to get a conversation happening and in the, um, in the change governance that, that, um, Created, one of the things that I put in there was we want to understand all of the different changes that are happening across the team. And one of the there’s four outcomes that can, that, that change can go on. 

[00:46:27] One of them we’re calling, it’s adjust to it. And that’s a term that I think GE coined, um, and Nike, of course, I was just about to say and just do it is great idea. Go and do it. And, um, You know, in those types of changes. If, if, if, um, a team member wants to make a change to a document that they use, that’s going to enhance their life or their client’s life, just do it, but we want. 

[00:46:54] You to share that with us, so that if there’s another team that wants to do exactly the same thing, they don’t have to start [00:47:00] from scratch. They’ve already got your experience and they can come to you and go, Hey, how did that work? How did you sell that to the business? So, um, by understanding and having transparency over all of the chains, you can then build on the change. 

[00:47:13] So coming back to that, just do it attitude. You know, you’re working with, you’ve worked with knowledge workers over a variety of different verticals and, you know, there could be lawyers that could be candidates. Um, what have you, and one of the things I’m curious to know is these service providers typically have a BAU. 

[00:47:31] They’ve got things to do. They’re providing a service to the rest of the organization, but how do you encourage them to, you know, how do you create spaces for them to innovate? Is it more organic or is there more structural components that you can put on? Like KPIs, things like that, or, you know, in your experience, what has enabled surfers service providers to innovate? 

[00:47:52] In my experience organically is. Is the outcome that you, that you want, or the [00:48:00] start that you want. I’ve been in organizations where people had KPIs, so they had to have innovation. Um, and that doesn’t work for everybody because not everybody has an innovation idea or the ideas that you get. Yeah. You know, not. 

[00:48:19] That’s great quality, great quality them, you know, change the brand of tea in the, in the tea bags. Um, thanks for that. Um, so I’m, I’m not a believer of making people be innovative. I think what you need to do is you need to allow people to participate if they want to participate. Right. And it has to happen organically. 

[00:48:39] You have to give them the avenues to be able to do that. So in this change governance, um, anybody who has a change idea can submit a request. You’re not forced to you, just if you want to. And you know, I think some of the best ideas come from people who have the time who [00:49:00] have the time and space to think about their process. 

[00:49:02] And I think not only the time and space, but when you start to put those ideas in their head, when they go back to their, to their job and they’re doing their job day in and day out, they start to look at it a little bit differently and they think what if I did this this way? And so that that’s coming from them and, and, uh, and a desire for them to want to do it. 

[00:49:22] And then you’ll get, you’ll get participation. You’ll get people who want to come and have the conversation and we’ll put that idea for, yeah. So I think the best. And this is from my experience is organic. Yeah. And I imagine what you mentioned with people going back, you know, let’s say for example, a lawyer going back to their desk and doing, providing service in a particular way and going, actually we can do this in a better way. 

[00:49:48] What predates that is actually the marketing behind what’s available to them to actually do transformation. So whether it be tools that. Our existing inside the enterprise. And boy, there’s a lot of tools that they could access. [00:50:00] I mean, they, I mean, even just shifting or, uh, going through that information and trying to figure out what’s appropriate is, is a challenge and also process around, well, can I actually change the way that I do this? 

[00:50:10] What skills who do I need to engage to make that a possibility all of that falls under, I think like a marketing or PR and awareness campaign where people are. Up-to-date on what they can use or leverage. Exactly. I had an experience last week that just changed my life and it was just an email came out saying we’re doing some, uh, outlook training. 

[00:50:32] On productivity. And my first thought was outlook training, who hasn’t been using outlook for a hundred years, but then I thought, hang on productivity. I’m interested. I’m intrigued. Um, and it was a two hour training course and it changed my life. It did because some of the things that I learned that you can do an outlook, I never knew existed nor did I ever have the time to, to explore them. 

[00:50:53] But here was someone who was telling me here’s some tips and tricks on how you can use outlook better to, [00:51:00] um, One reduce the amount of items in your inbox and make you more productive. Um, but also change the way that you kind of work. So one small change that has made my life so much better, and this is working from home because a lot of the. 

[00:51:18] Because we’re now in an environment where a majority of us are working from home, a lot of emails, you know, there’s a lot of, I think there’s a lot more email traffic. It feels like there’s a lot more email traffic. And one of the change was instead of when outlook launches, I’ve always launched my inbox, but now I launched my calendar and my task list. 

[00:51:35] And it’s just a different vibe. And who would have thought, you know, Outlook’s been around for how long? Correct. We actually just moved out. Look. So I’m thinking the whole time he said, I’ve got to go along to that to asset show. What are they do as I’ll tell Evan the lady’s name and you can get in touch with her. 

[00:51:51] We definitely need to get on board. That’s a perfect example of, you know, a technology that we all have. Yeah. And there are technologies that we have [00:52:00] in house already that you can tap into and you may not know. Um, what they can and can’t do. SharePoint’s another one, you know, how many organizations have SharePoint? 

[00:52:10] The SharePoint of today is far different from the SharePoint of 10 years ago, right? Yeah. And there’s so many tools attached to that. They can integrate with other components as well. And if you’re in a legal or a compliance or a regulatory role, you know, document management is, is critical. You know, you want to make sure that you can tap into documents that you’ve done in the past, as opposed to starting from scratch all the time. 

[00:52:34] And that’s an easy, you know, SharePoint is a very easy, and I’m not taking away from any of the document management softwares out there. I think there are some fabulous, um, technology, but you know, if you’re limited to what you can and can’t do have a look at what’s available to you already. Absolutely. 

[00:52:51] And I think that’s often an overlooked step when considering how technology plays in, because the shyness of new toys draws people in and says, well, that seems [00:53:00] like the most appropriate tool, but actually you don’t. Necessarily need to spend extra money, might actually be able to solve it using the existing technologies that you have in house, especially in enterprise. 

[00:53:09] Oh yeah. If I, the example that I used around setting up the MVP for our intake, that group went and in sourced, what was available internally and we were able to use some internal, um, Technologies that, as I said, enabled them to, to create an MVP in six weeks. Yeah. That’s a beautiful story of transformation right there. 

[00:53:31] So, um, what other advice would you give to teams who are undergoing transformation right now, who are facing some of the challenges you mentioned earlier? And, you know, they’ve. The heard some of your advice around how to procure technology and how to think about processes and mapping, things are getting data. 

[00:53:46] Is there any other advice that you would give to a team maybe in a similar position to yourself thinking about legal transformation? I th I think there’s a couple of things that, um, come to mind. One is transparency. So you want to [00:54:00] make sure that there’s transparency in the level of change that’s happening, because if you take on too much, it can just become. 

[00:54:09] Too onerous and the people could run out of gas. They won’t have a level of interest. So make sure you have transparency on what you’re delivering and also make sure that the amount of change that you have on is manageable. Um, I think those are two main things and I think you need to allow people time and space to do things. 

[00:54:30] And in some environments that’s easier than in others, but. If you allow the time and space for people to think, you don’t know where they’re going to go and how great those ideas that they come up with. And, you know, one idea is, um, especially because most of us are working from home is to just, you know, have one hour a week, maybe block out 12 to one where you say, I’m not going to have any meetings between 12 and one on a Tuesday, and I’m going to devote that [00:55:00] hour to innovation. 

[00:55:01] Right? Right. And then how do I, or how do I, as a person who’s thinking about transformation, then I have an idea I’ve focalized it, but then how do I move? And I think we establish in a POC on MVP might be the next stage. What does the next few steps look like for someone who wants to implement innovation or foster others to do innovation? 

[00:55:23] Think you have to look at what’s available. So do you have a transformation team that sits somewhere centrally that you can tap into? Um, you know, are there innovation hubs or, um, pages within your intranet that you can tap into? There are an awful lot of tools out there that you can use to create or enact change that. 

[00:55:51] You could pick up like that. Like the five whys is one example, and then there’s also, um, uh, many other tools that you can do, you can use. And [00:56:00] I think most organizations today, big organizations, if you’re in a small organization, maybe not Google will be your com your best friend, um, tap into what’s already happening. 

[00:56:11] Because if you can get advice from someone who’s already in your organization, they understand the culture and they understand what’s. What can and can’t be done or what, what you, what the scope of what you can do is, or who you need to speak to. So I think if you’re in an organization that has a, uh, transformation element to it already tap into them. 

[00:56:33] If you’re in an organization that doesn’t necessarily have that, probably speaking to your people leader first would be a good place to start to find out what the appetite is. And if the appetite is there, then. Start to Google, you know, how can I do, you know, I’ve got this problem. I want to do this. I use Google daily. 

[00:56:55] You know, I know how something works, but I want to find something different. So [00:57:00] I’ll just type it in and just explore what comes up. And sometime you find some nuggets and sometimes you think that was a complete waste of time. Hopefully more nuggets than a waste of time. I’m still using it. So, um, so moving on then to, you know, we’ve talked about some challenges around transformation. 

[00:57:20] We’ve also talked about how to actually address some of those challenges, thinking about people, process and technology, but what you know now, That you’ve done this a few times. Um, obviously there are teams who are then going to be looking into the light at the end of the tunnel after you’ve kind of gone through that transformation, what can they expect at the end of that transformation journey? 

[00:57:38] So let’s say, um, you’ve gone through, you know, either adapting your people base or your processes or your technology stack. What, what can one expect at the end of this journey? Well accolades and reward and recognition. No, they can expect that life’s going to their working life is going to be different at the end. 

[00:57:58] Um, it’s it can be an [00:58:00] exciting and, you know, in bigger writing journey. It can, it, it goes through peaks and troughs though. You know, you got highlights and low lights on the journey. Um, but once you get to the end and you can see, and you can demonstrate the improvement that you’ve made makes all the difference. 

[00:58:20] You know, something that took, um, a process that took four days before and then after the project ran now takes two hours. That’s huge, right? Um, that’s a huge improvement. Are you going to get that every time? Probably not, but even saving an hour of an individual’s time a week, you know, you do the math one hour times. 

[00:58:42] However many people do that process times 52 weeks. Huge. Huge. So keep your eye on the prize. Try to try to stay motivated once the end result. And you’ll feel a level, a level of accomplishment too. And in some cases, you know, there is [00:59:00] always reward and recognition, but it’s not what we, or it’s not why we do it. 

[00:59:04] Yeah, that’s right. Um, another thing that I want to understand is, you know, I just had a conversation earlier with a mutual friend, tan rain, and she was talking about how. It transformation strategy should be typically one to three years, given that things change so rapidly. And in particular, one of the things that, um, is a very common instance is leadership changes, direction changes. 

[00:59:25] The overarching organization takes a completely different approach. How did, how did teams who are within that organization adapt to that change? Like what advice would you give to a team who’s going through something like that? So I think back in, uh, an organization I was in and we were. The core system, the core platform that they were using was coming to end of life. 

[00:59:49] And we had done an RFP, um, And in the, well, we had started an RFP and the team that I took on at [01:00:00] that point was I had some really, um, diligent, detailed people. And I mean, I had spreadsheets of, of requirements and, um, it was all tagged and a lot of effort had been put into place. Um, and even the number of vendors that were available and they’d gone out to everyone and, and offered, given them the, um, Invitation to it to participate. 

[01:00:24] And we got to a point where I think we narrowed the field today three or four, because it was quite a discreet type of technology. There were not hundreds out there. And in the middle of all of this, the leadership changes and the leadership goes, yeah, that’s great. But, uh, we want to start, you know, basically from scratch. 

[01:00:45] So, um, we did that. But we narrow it with, instead of going out to everybody, we, we, now that field to, to just the, the three I think, and we put everybody through demos and you know that, yeah. Let the new [01:01:00] leadership have the opportunity to understand what we were doing and to have, you know, have a say in how it was being done, you know, they didn’t come in and say, you’re not doing this piece of work because they knew that we had to do it. 

[01:01:11] And, um, We went through this whole process again with different people. Um, but we got different information. So if you look at the positive, you know, we uncovered things that we hadn’t uncovered initially, which was a good thing at the end of it. We were doing, um, We were, uh, choosing the vendors. So we now the field down to two and we had some success criteria. 

[01:01:34] It wasn’t called success criteria back then. I can’t even remember what it was called. And we had this form and we said everyone that was voting or had a, a decision right around this table. And we gave them an envelope. And we gave him the paper and they sat in the room and they filled it out. They then closed up the envelope, they sealed it and they signed it. 

[01:01:55] And the reason we did that was because we didn’t want [01:02:00] the new leadership group to think that if the outcome was exactly the same, that we had influenced that decision in any way. So we wanted to make sure that that whole process. Wasn’t influenced that the outcome was exactly the same, oddly enough. But there was a whole process that we had to go through. 

[01:02:19] And, and I just remember, you know, being in that room, even now I can picture it being in that meeting room with all these senior people sitting around the table, you know, you can’t talk to each other, you just got to fill out the form, you got to sign it, you know, and they’d hand you the envelope and said, you gotta sign it. 

[01:02:35] You can’t give it to me in Tucson. Oh, you haven’t sealed it. And then we went away and there were three of us in the room that opened those envelopes and. And, uh, and the decision was to go with, with, with the same decision originally, but that whole process took place because the change in leader. Right. 

[01:02:51] And what time period was that over? I want to say three months, maybe four months. Yeah. Since the leadership changed. [01:03:00] Yeah. Yeah. It’s interesting. Cause that kind of comes back to what you mentioned before that transparency. Right. And, and in this case, it sounds like when the leadership changed, there was some concern that, you know, you guys potentially could have influenced the previous crowd, the outcome you guys wanted to kind of push it towards a certain direction. 

[01:03:15] Uh, transparency was the key. Motivation to doing things like signing the letter and making sure they sealed everything that everyone was across the same on the same page at no art at full transparency. Right, right. Wow. That’s interesting. And that’s where the steering that was for the student that was for the buying committee, right? 

[01:03:33] That’s where the executive level. Yep. Yeah. So some level, right? So, so somebody that listens to a thinking about how do I, you know, in a environment with our patients, different agendas, where people have different thoughts and processes, how is the cleanest way? What’s the best way for me to actually approach that environment? 

[01:03:48] Because you know, we both know leadership groups can all have individuals who have very sharp and strong opinions. You want to create environment where it’s almost like a democratic float. Where everyone then can vote, [01:04:00] uh, in accordance with what they believe. But ultimately what the group comes out with is the decision that moves forward. 

[01:04:04] And you want the individual who’s voting to be able to vote the way that they want to vote and not be influenced by the person sitting next to them or the, or the leader. Right? You want people to be able to have their. Know their opinion and share their opinion, right? Some of the things that you need to think about when you’re doing a current state and it should be, you know, when you are facilitating a discussion around the current state or the future state of a process, some things that you need to be mindful of, that you want to make sure that everybody has a voice in that, in that room. 

[01:04:32] Okay. One of the things that we used to say at Citibank is leave your rank at the door and I’m sure that wasn’t. Citibank tagged. It came from somewhere. But you know, as you started the session, you wanted to make sure that everyone was on the same level, because if your boss was in there, you had just as much right. 

[01:04:49] To voice your opinion as, as he did or she did. Yeah. Um, because what we found in, in some instances, if we hadn’t done that was that people weren’t being [01:05:00] themselves. They were agreeing with what their boss was saying, because they didn’t want. To be different. They didn’t want their boss to think that they didn’t agree with them. 

[01:05:09] Right. And w you know, when you are, when you bring subject matter experts in, if you can leave the leaders out, do not that they don’t add value, but sometimes they put a, uh, a complexity in the discussion that, that you don’t necessarily need. But if you do have them make sure that everyone is clear that yeah. 

[01:05:28] Yeah, this is a safe space. This is about improving our processes. It’s not about people saving or jobs or whatever. Yeah. And that works both ways, I guess, you know, even from a leadership being on the same level as someone who’s maybe not a leader, but also subject matter experts who may be closer to the process, actually not overshadowing people who are leaders, but don’t know the actual process themselves. 

[01:05:51] So it’s actually a very fair process to go through. Because sometimes if, as a leader you’ll take on [01:06:00] processes, you’ve never done them. You just take on the word, the people that are doing them, know what they’re doing, and they do them. Right. You know, at a high level, you understand what they’re doing, but you’re not in the way. 

[01:06:09] Yep. Um, so you have to trust that they’re going to tell you how it really, you know, what’s, what’s the true picture here. Exactly. Yeah. And you have to be willing to hear it, especially if you’ve created or implemented the process and someone comes along and tells you. Yeah, it’s not so great. Well, hang on, comes back to the empathy point we mentioned earlier. 

[01:06:28] It does, and there are good ways to raise those and there are not so good ways to give any advice. Um, if, if you are raising a, um, an improvement to a process that you know, that the person you’re pitching it to created it. Hmm. Just think about how you would take that. If it was your, was your process and you put, you know, sweat and tears into it. 

[01:06:53] Yeah. Um, and just thinking about how you would like to be notified that it could be done better, right. [01:07:00] And, you know, if, if, if, if you make, I hate to say this, but if you’re making get a win-win situation, um, it’s probably better received. You know, I think about some of the things that we’ve made changes, where we’ve had to communicate to the business. 

[01:07:14] And there was one instance that the conversation didn’t go as well as they had had hoped it would go. And that was because they went in there with so much excitement about how it was going to, you know, this change was going to improve their lives. But they didn’t focus on how it was going to improve the client’s life. 

[01:07:30] Right. And so they walked out of that meeting, deflated, demotivated, what have we done? We’re never going to get this up. And I said, just take a step back. I came to song and I said, take a step back and you’ve got to sell it to them. You got to tell them why they have to do this. Why their life depends on them, making this change, make it all about them. 

[01:07:50] Don’t make it about you. The bit about you is the cream on top, right? Wow. So they went back after I think a month and they repositioned it and [01:08:00] that piece of work got up and they were able to implement. So think about, you know, another tip is, think about your audience. Hmm. And understand where your audience is coming from. 

[01:08:11] If you’re pitching to a group of senior executives getting into the detail and the Instagram is probably not the best, right? Because they’re so detached from it. So detached, they pretty much want to know why, why am I doing that? Why, why should we give you the time to do this? How much is it going to cost me? 

[01:08:27] And what’s the benefit I’m going to get. Right. And if you can focus on those three things, that’s a good start. Whereas someone on the ground, if you’re trying to convince people to change the way they do their processes, you’re actually focusing more on their operational side of things. Well, you want to, you know, w what is it, w what’s that old saying what’s in it for me? 

[01:08:47] W I F M my eyes are kind of rolling to the top of my head, cause I’m not sure am I showing my age, you know, w I F M what’s in it for me. Yep. And so you’ve got to really change our conversation to suit [01:09:00] their story in there. Kind of day-to-day know your audience for sure. And sometimes that’s not easy to do to know your audience and I don’t always get it right. 

[01:09:13] One of the things that, um, I guess I struggle with it at at times is how much do I release and win because you want people to be on the journey, but you also don’t want them disengaged because they’ve already switched off because it’s too much. Or it’s not, not of interest to them. Yeah. And I don’t want to give people too much information until there’s a formula, a formulation of the idea and to what? 

[01:09:38] Yeah. Yeah. Do you feel like there’s an aspect of time to that? Because in my mind, I think the tendency is to kind of just either not give too much information and then drip feed it over time or to give too much information. Sorry, let me start that again. I think the. The tendency is to think, can I drip feed this information to people or do I just give them [01:10:00] upfront? 

[01:10:00] And that aspect of time isn’t considered. But what are your thoughts on that? I think it depends on the situation. If you’ve got a full fledged formula formed idea, the more information, the better, if you are still working through what that piece of work is going to look like, you probably want to drip feed it and you want to make sure that you’ve got the right people in at the right time. 

[01:10:22] Yeah. So, you know, is it something that has to be pitched at the exact level first? Is it something that should be pitched at middle management? First? You have to think about your audience and where your idea is. So if it’s a strategy, you want to make sure that you’ve got good bones on your, on your strategy before you start to present it. 

[01:10:44] Because the other fear that you have even at a senior level is you could lose them. Why do I need to do this? This doesn’t feel important to me. You’re not giving me enough information and that’s that’s happened because sometimes as transformation exists, [01:11:00] um, we’re too close to things. So we forget sometimes that, you know, you’ve got to go back to square one and there’s an analogy I use sometimes when I’m coaching people on. 

[01:11:14] Presenting their ideas to two groups. And when they come, they go and they present the first idea and they come back and it’s like, don’t forget the context. Don’t forget to tell them why and remind them about the last conversation. And I do this myself and I say, it’s the goldfish bowl theory. You know, by the time they get around the goldfish bowl, they’ve forgotten what you’ve told them. 

[01:11:34] Right. So what advice would you give to teams who are thinking about how they measure success? Because they’ve gone through that transformation, but at the end of the tunnel now, and they’ve implemented either process or new technology or brought in new people, how do, how do you measure success or how do you adequately measure success or failure in a, in an environment? 

[01:11:55] Uh, that’s the only one transformation measuring [01:12:00] success. Um, That’s done really well is done. The thinking is done when you’re starting the idea, because it’s very easy to jump into, want to start implementation if you don’t have baseline and, you know, I can’t imagine any transformation. Well, I’m sure there are, but for me sometimes, yeah, I forget. 

[01:12:24] Oh yeah, where’s our baseline data, but it is important because when you have baseline data, you can then show the improvement that the change has made and that improvement. And it takes some thought because that improvement can come from practically anywhere. If I think back to. To my Citibank days, we used to have something which was called blue dollars in green dollars and green dollars were hardcore savings. 

[01:12:55] So if you, your improvements meant that [01:13:00] there were less people, those were hardcore, you know, dollar savings. The blue dollars is more your soft savings. So for example, if you improve a process, um, and people are. Happier being at work and doing that process, you’re going to reduce the amount of people that actually leave the organization, which means that you’re going to save on recruitment costs. 

[01:13:22] You’re going to save on training costs, et cetera. Those are not really hardcore dollars. So my advice is. If he, if you take that time upfront and think about all the different options and have some data so that you can say, well, this is, this is where we were when we started. And this is where we are when we ended, you can apply those, those different types of types of savings. 

[01:13:41] So if you’re improving employee engagement, for example, the higher the employee engagement, the more stickier the employee becomes, which means that you then are going to save on recruitment. You’re going to save on training because you’re not replacing people as often as if you have. A disgruntled workforce. 

[01:13:58] Um, so [01:14:00] knowing those things up front and you might be working on a, uh, on a people process that, you know, your engagement was X. And then, you know, six months after you implemented in 12 months after you implemented your engagement score was why. And it makes sense. And, um, it sounds like coming up with those metrics upfront is critical to comparing before and after current state versus features. 

[01:14:23] Yeah. You need to have that current state baseline data and there can be assumptions. I think about one of the projects that are around an implementation, you know, the assumption was that we would save an hour of a team members time per week. Now we knew it was going to be more than an hour, but we didn’t have concrete data. 

[01:14:41] So he said that an hour, a week, times 52 times 300 people, it’s a big number. Yeah. Huge. And so that was, and then you can test that in the future state, whether or not that is a realistic assumption. Uh, but at least having some baseline then puts it as a benchmark. And you can also put a dollar figure [01:15:00] to that too. 

[01:15:00] So if you have an average cost of a team, Um, you never want to, when you’re doing, when you’re doing costs, you always want to do average. You never want to do, um, individuals. Um, if you’re doing an average cost, um, you can then work out what that dollar dollar value is. Yeah. And if you’re going to get really technical, you know, you either have, um, fully loaded costs or just, you know, employee costs and fully loaded are. 

[01:15:28] When you’re working in an organization, HR or finance can give you a fully loaded average of an, of a band or a role, which includes, um, super includes, uh, software, hardware, right? Real estate, everything. Wow. And we tend, you recommend, sorry. Oh, it depends on what you’re doing. If you are doing a business case that you’re trying to get money for, you might. 

[01:15:52] Want to use the fully loaded cost. If you’re doing a small piece of work that you just want to show the improvement, do an average and [01:16:00] it’s up to, you know, it’s up to the individual, but that would be my advice. Sure. Well, we’ve come to the end of the episode. So we want to thank you so much, Denise, for coming along. 

[01:16:10] Hope you had fun. How’d you find it? Oh my God. Um, I was a bit nervous at first. Um, But I enjoyed it. So I’m really glad that you invited me to do this because it was, it was a lot of fun and I hope that, um, I’ve had some provide some benefit to the, to your list. Absolutely. And if this is, want to reach out to you and where can they find you? 

[01:16:34] Uh, Denise Doyle on LinkedIn, LinkedIn. Cool. Yep. Awesome. Thanks Andy. Appreciate it. Thanks. Hey listeners, if you have your own story of digital service transformation, or know someone who does, we’d love to hear from you and get you on the show, just shoot us an [email protected] If you’d like to read our show notes or listen to more episodes, you can always head over to our [email protected] or [01:17:00] find us on your major streaming platforms like Apple. 

[01:17:02] Spotify and Google as always. Thanks so much for listening and we’ll see you at the next one. 

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