I have previously written that the selection of the sponsor is the first milestone decision in the execution of a successful transformation. The sponsor ensures that the goals of the transformation are aligned with the company’s strategic objectives. They also foster support from other senior executives and provide direction as the programme unfolds.
Additionally, it is important for the sponsor to set the cultural parameters of the steering committee. I’m referring to the valuing of diversity of thought in the steering committee, individuals feeling able to voice their opinions and encouraging the team to be honest and open about the programme. In short, businesses should want to avoid the ‘culture of green’ just because that is what people want to see.
The sponsor and the transformation lead should also work closely to set, clarify and align expectations. This will allow the transformation lead to address the amount of guidance, senior level support and resources that are required for the transformation effort. The sponsor can analyse and sharpen the transformation objectives, key milestones and approve a review and communication schedule.
Finally, I firmly believe there should be KPIs attached to the selected sponsor of the transformation effort. Being assigned a sponsor role should be seen as a reward for outstanding performance within a business and a key adjunct to professional development.
What do you think a sponsor should be held accountable for in a transformation programme?
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