Transformation & Change108

What about the human intelligence?

What about the human intelligence? Margarita Yonova and Alize Hofmeester

Alize Hofmeester, Margarita Yonova-Popova

April 14, 2021


In the era of virtual working and agile transformations, what about the human intelligence?

Evelyn, CEO of a big company, sits at her desk staring out of the window. At the beginning of 2020 she kicked-off a digital transformation in her organization. After some very successful pilots, a substantial part of the organization has been transformed into new self-organizing structures and models. Even the office has been totally refurbished to facilitate the new methodologies, rituals and meetings. Then COVID-19 transformed the World. Looking at the empty offices she wonders what happened. “We were well on our way”, she thought. “Yes, we moved into agile structures and digitalized everything we could. We changed our way of working but we are still traditional thinkers. We followed the assumption that our people would change seamlessly. Nothing less is true.” She wonders: “How to move forward?”

Imagine you are Evelyn. What would you do? When you reflect on your own situation or the situation your company is in now, you maybe recognize a bit of what Evelyn is thinking? 

Most of the organizations who start a transformation to become more business agile focus on infrastructure. Talking with companies we hear that tribes or self-organizing teams are introduced and Agile methods and rituals are implemented in parts of the organizations. 

We often hear that organizations struggle with the way of leading this new way of working, that it is difficult to move from control to trust. We have identified a new purpose and new behaviours but who knows and cares about role modeling them? How are people able to change and learn new behaviours if they are treated and rewarded the old way? A department may be virtual and self-organized, it is still a department. 

Going forward we cannot go back the old way. Going forward there is no new normal. There will be always something coming out of the eco-system impacting our business and personal lives. Going forward we need to think beyond the structures and our own organization, department or team. We need to look at the whole system. We are part of it and we have an impact on it.

During our session we take you on our journey. A journey that is not only about digitalization, structures and frameworks. It is about people. Get practical examples to experiment with on your journey to the future of work in which we all have an important role to play and to act upon.

About Margarita Yonova-Popova

Agile Transformation Coach @ Erste Group Bank AG

Margarita is an Agile Transformation Coach, part of the HR team at Erste Group Bank AG and has 9 years of experience in organizational effectiveness, change management, and cultural development.

In her role as an Agile Transformation Coach, Margarita has a strong focus on people, culture and leadership. She specializes in coaching agile teams and agile transformation initiatives beyond IT, predominantly in the retail banking area, HR and operations. She is highly passionate to support the HR evolution towards agile practices and mindset.

Margarita is co-founder of the Agile Hub at Erste Group as a community of practice to support teams on their agile journey and to raise awareness about agile across the organization.

Margarita is a strong believer that behind every successful organization there are great people with strong capabilities, courage and innovative minds. Therefore, she sees her purpose as an Agile Transformation Coach in enabling a healthy environment for teams to learn, co-create and collaborate in a better way.

About Alize Hofmeester

People & Transformation Executive, Author of Purpose Driven People - Creating business agility & sustainable growth

As a passionate People & Transformation Executive, Alize Hofmeester helps organisations to stay relevant to their customers, by reshaping their future way of working and facilitating a fresh mindset that leads to companywide flow and business agility. 

Alize is considered a true visionary and thought leader in the field of business agile transformations. By unlocking the infinite human potential within an organisation, she is able to ignite new ways of working and thinking in large and complex organisations.

One thing is for sure: only changing the structure or implementing a new model does not make your organisation Agile. Alize strongly believes if you are able to facilitate the right environment where people can experiment, learn and improve, magical things will happen. That means that everyone in the organisation has to be willing to be involved and wants to build this new aspired environment.

After a successful career in banking, management consulting, healthcare and recruitment Alize started a new chapter as founder of Twinxter and creator of the People Journey Circle©.

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