Organizational change: From the corner office or the factory floor?

Line Morbak from Global LEAP consulting

Line Morbak from Global LEAP consulting

Organizational change is on the tip of many tongues these days, and CEO’s are investing more in culture change programs. Still, many feel overwhelmed by the possibilities, and don’t know how or where to start.

Interview with Line Morbak

Line Morkbak from Global Leap Consulting has a long history of working with organizations who strive for a culture that fosters collaboration, and in her experience, there is no one size fits all when it comes to change:

  • People feel inspired around the potential of the “future of work” but at the same time overwhelmed. So for no lack of wanting, we often don’t know how to start changing the culture in our teams and our organizations.

Change starts with our vision

That’s why Line launched LEAP laboratory; looking for cases and answers to questions from peers and clients on how to get started, when we want to work together in a new and better way:

  • In each LEAP Lab interview I have asked what their advice is for others who want to start evolutionizing their workplace. Very different answers but also a common theme of taken a close look at what your vision for a future workplace look like. Is it transparency, agile decision processes, breaking down the traditional hierarchical structures, given equal voices to all employees, a 4-day work week, bringing your full self to work, getting rid of middle managers?

And visions aren’t achieved by following formula

During her work, Line recognized that the workplace vision varied a great deal from organization to organization. And so did the methods. The big split seemed to evolve around which people in the organization should initiate the change. Should it come from management leading the way by example? Or from workers increasingly taking ownership of their workplace?  

  • At BASF's division of It & Digitalization (the German global chemical giant) their culture change initiative Embrace was kick-started and supported from a handful of people in the top of the division and cascade down to the 5000 people in that division. Very conscious guiding principles for the culture initiative focused on co-creation and anchoring ownership with the people and not with the leadership team.

At Airbus, Line’s interviews have documented a different approach:

  • At Airbus the voices for change bubbled up from within the ecosystem of the organization. Leadership listened and acknowledged the curiosity and need for change but the different initiatives and communities which developed were completely self-organized.

So far Line’s work with LEAP laboratory is showing that there are no fixed answers when it comes to culture change:

  • Does change have to come from the top of an organization? Or does it have a stronger resonance and chance of impact if it's bubbling up from the grown up? There are examples from Airbus and BASF which gives very different questions to that question!

Lines vision with LEAP lab's is to share the experiences of organizations and people who are in the middle of workplace experiments right now with the community.

Learn more about change & culture

If you are interested in learning more, consider popping in for the Culture & Change track at the Boye19 Brooklyn Conference. You can also join Lines workshop on culture change, which will be a sharing of those culture hacks that the most pioneering organizations are deploying to change their workplace.

Are you based in Switzerland? Then you are in luck as we have 2 local peer groups on culture & change.