Data collection, analysis, and application have become increasingly important in today’s economy—regardless of industry or country. But not all companies are equally keen to embrace the opportunities they present. Some may find themselves forced to respond if they are to keep competition at bay. Others are grappling to maintain data quality or face the challenges of data security.

Whatever the changes they need to make, a business model for transformation will be of help. We present to you the MAPPE model, which offers insight and support when implementing change in your organization.

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Why change is vital  

The finance and utility industries have something in common: in both sectors, incumbent companies happily existed without the need for change. After all, their products were constant, the demand invariable. Solid and conservative, these companies were able to sail in the lee of economic turbulence. 

Alas, things changed. Financial institutions faced the emergence of small, more tech-savvy FinTechs, as well as the introduction of GDPR. Utility companies were challenged by the energy transition. One of the changes they needed to make was to tap into the opportunities created by data analysis.  

And really, it isn’t just companies in these sectors that need to step up their efforts to remain relevant, work more efficiently, and create better customer experiences. Companies in every industry must be aware of the opportunities and pitfalls that come with the application of statistical information. Whether they wish to outrun the competition, migrate data, or maintain the quality and security of their databases, all of them should instill in their employees the urgency, awareness, and the skills to do so properly. 

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Companies in every industry must be aware of the opportunities and pitfalls that come with the application of statistical information [...] They should instill in their employees the urgency, awareness and the skills to do so properly.

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This is a process of organizational and cultural change that requires time and energy, both on control and operational levels – and all employees need to be involved.  

Moreover, implementing change in an organization needs to be done in a structured way, applying a proven business model for transformation.  

Implementing change in an organization with the MAPPE model 

There is a wide array of change management tools and business models for transformation available, but the MAPPE model stands out in its flexibility, practicality, and applicability. Allow us to explain.  

The MAPPE model can be used to bring about change, but it also enables the addition of other topics, such as data security or GDPR. Therefore, we believe it is not just a change management tool, but rather a business model for transformation.  

MAPPE stands for Mobilization, Analysis, Policy, Planning, and Execution. Rooted in literature and proven on the job, these are the five successive stages through which you set targets and, ultimately, achieve change.  

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Mobilization and Analysis 

The first two steps in this business model for transformation are taken by higher management executives, according to professor Thijs Homan. They are the ones to determine the requirements that need to be met to start the process of organizational change. 

They also perform a GAP-analysis or ist-soll analysis: They map the situation as-is (ist) and decide upon the situation to-be (soll). 

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The Mappe model is not only a change management tool, but also a business model for transformation.

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Policy, Planning and Execution 

Once the difference between ist and soll is clear, management hands over the baton to a project team, which starts by deciding upon the most suitable solution. They draw up the policies, develop action plans for every change topic, and carry them out upon approval. 

During these stages, PDCA-cycles are established. These cycles consist of four steps: 

  1. PLAN
  2. DO
  3. CHECK
  4. ACT

These steps are taken successively and continuously, starting the cycle again and again. PDCA-cycles help monitor the quality of the changes that are made. They also improve the learning capacity and awareness among employees. Although these steps are particularly relevant to the stages of Planning and Execution, it is also possible that the results of the Check-step dictate a return to the Mobilization or Analysis stage. 

In every consecutive stage of the MAPPE model, the change process becomes more tangible, tailored to meet the specific needs of every unique situation. 

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MAPPE model steps

The MAPPE model steps: Mobilization, Analysis, Policy, Planning, Execution.

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Included: Color thinking 

But the five stages of the MAPPE model are not all there is to this business model for transformation. The model also uses a change framework, developed by emeritus professor of consultancy Leon de Caluwé and PhD behavioral scientist Hans Vermaak. This framework applies colors to create awareness about the process. 

While the MAPPE model enables the situational formation of change management mechanisms per stage, the color framework visualizes the change strategies that are required: 

Blue: The rules of engagement are defined 

The color blue symbolizes the involvement of the management team during the Mobilization and Analysis stages. Blue is appropriate, as the management executives take the first step in the business transformation process and define the rules of engagement. 

Red: Inspire employees 

The color red stands for employee motivation. They need to be inspired to understand the urgency and the need for change if they are to participate. 

Green: Educate your workforce 

Green stands for education: your staff needs to learn new skills during the change process if they are to make the transformation successful. 

Both red and green match the Policy, Planning, and Execution stages. 

Grey: Independent advice 

The color grey represents the advisory board. They lack color, as they are independent and free to offer (unsolicited) advice. 

As you can see, the MAPPE model includes all organizational levels: Mobilization and Analysis are strategically oriented, Policy and Planning are tactical, and Execution is focused on operational levels. 

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Involve your employees 

We wish to emphasize that the involvement of employees is vital. If they are not on board, you will not succeed. Therefore, bear in mind the following aspects:  

  1. Communication
    First, the management will send their message down to the operational levels. After that, the various people within the organization will communicate among themselves to carry out the transformation (spontaneous communication), as the aforementioned professor Homan asserts.  
  2. Ownership and commitment 
    When people start to discuss the impending change, it is important to create a sense of ownership and commitment. Stephen Covey states in his book ‘The Speed of Trust, that this can be achieved by adjusting the paradigm and changing language and behavior. 
  3. Reward good behavior
    Throughout the change process, it is essential to keep rewarding good practice, according to Hans Baars, prominent business coach.

The MAPPE model in practice 

Let’s illustrate the MAPPE model with an example. Imagine a company desperate to retain customers, while their competitors offer differentiating customer experiences, winning over clients.  

This company wishes to offer equally captivating experiences but doesn’t know where to start. After mobilizing the right managers to start the business transformation, this group sets out the requirements for the change, including a budget, the duration of the business model for transformation, reporting, and expected results. 

A GAP-analysis shows that they have a vast amount of customer data, which nobody puts to use.  

The management team hands over their findings and assigns the project team to find ways to deploy the data and achieve their targets: a 20 percent increase in customer retention and a 10 percent increase in new clients.  

The project team gets to work:  

  • One group determines which skills are needed to develop new, exciting customer experiences. Also, they match employees with upcoming tasks, keeping in mind their abilities and interests.  
  • A second group of experts focuses on the various sources, mapping how to connect the systems and merge the data. 
  • A third group carries out data analysis to develop business opportunities and marketing funnels.  
  • A fourth group delves into the legalities of data storage, governance, security, and privacy issues 
  • A fifth group focuses on how data management should be used within the organization and set up the data policy. 

When the teams conclude their work, they start with the next stage of the change process: putting into practice the outcomes, developing new products and marketing funnels, while keeping up with technological and legal requirements. Lastly, before the project is wrapped up, all employees receive training so that they can continue their work without having to rely on external expertise. 

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Continuous evaluation allows for changes to the strategies, enabling the teams to meet their targets.

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MAPPE model advantages

This example shows that the MAPPE model is beautifully flexible, breaking down the change process into transparent, bite-sized pieces and adapting to the various stages and activities of the process. Essentially, this organizational business model for transformation enables an iterative way of working, the stages resembling Agile sprints.  

Consequently, it is also readily applicable and highly practical. Everyone involved will understand the approach and will be able to put it to use. As a result, the MAPPE model will facilitate awareness, both about the change process and the targets to be achieved.  

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Achieving lasting change in organizational transformation

Change is seductive. From more effective teams to improved performance, the advantages are just too enticing to pass up. But how can you make sure that organizational transformation works for you? How should you choose your framework and how should you use it?

read more

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MAPPE model potential pitfalls 

Of course, the MAPPE model also harbors some pitfalls.  

First of all, the management team starts the process of organizational change. But when they have mobilized the company and made their GAP-analysis, they are supposed to cede control. However, not every manager is equally able to let go, and their continuous interference may cause friction, confusion, or frustration.  

The second disadvantage of this business model for transformation has to do with the advisory board. This group will consist of independent consultants, experts, or professors, either from within the company or hired externally. Failure to take heed of their advice will lead to sub-optimal results.  

What can the MAPPE model do for you? 

Nevertheless, we believe the MAPPE model is applicable in every organization, regardless of industry, size, or location. After all, every company will benefit from optimized data management. Therefore, we encourage you to look into your targets. How do you wish to improve your products or services? How can data management be of help?  

We also challenge you to apply this business model for transformation to achieve your goals. And should you have any questions, feel free to contact us at any time! 

Arno van Loo

Area Manager Data Management – Accenture Technology

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