Introduction (statistics - International, Australia and NZ)

International statistics

Most change initiatives fail. In the early 1990s it was found that around 2/3 of organisations involved in total quality management projects failed to produce the hoped-for-results. Similarly, for organisations instigating re-engineering programs, around 70% failed.

Between 1980 and 1995 each Fortune 100 company invested, on average, more than $US 1 billion in change programs:

- of these only 30% produced any improvement in the bottom line results that exceeded the company's investment in that change process;

- only 50% improved their share prices.

A Gallup poll (late 1990s) reported that 75% of American business leaders are not well prepared to manage change

(sources: Harvard Business Review 1998 a, b & c; Peter Senge et al 1999; Robert Kriegel et al 1996)

Australian and New Zealand Statistics

An Australian survey (1998)found that only 22% of major change initiatives achieved all the desired benefits. If budget constraints and time deadlines were removed, it was 50%.

A study of around 250 organisations undergoing change in Australia and New Zealand showed:

- 67% of organisations experienced at least one major setback;

- 47% were hit by at least two major setbacks;

- 29% by at least three major setbacks;

- 88% of executives felt that the intended changes and new direction for their organisations were correct;

- 92% felt that the changes were not beyond the organisation's capacity to achieve, yet reality showed otherwise.

Other research indicates that 50% to 80% of large systems' implementation, organisational re-engineering and change efforts fail to deliver the promised benefits

In summary, the above statistics highlight the large gap between expectations and achievements in organisational transition

(sources: Michael Crawford et al, 1996; Dennis Turner, 1998)


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