Ready to Change Track? Three Activities to Help Leadership Teams Drive Business Agility and Adapt to the Post Defence Strategic Review Environment

How important is it for an organisation to have a responsive leadership team if it wants to make the most of the opportunities presented by the recent Defence Strategic Review? The Review clarifies that significant reforms are required to Australia’s defence posture and structure. Effective leadership will be essential in any organisation that hopes to adapt to these changes.

Effective leadership teams enable businesses to be agile, particularly during significant change. The need to be agile is brought to the fore in the recent Defence Strategic Review, which outlines the need for ambitious reforms to the country’s defence posture and structure. As the Review notes, “realising the ambition of the Review will require a whole-of-government effort, coupled with a significant financial commitment and major reform.”

I would go one further; it will take a whole of Australia effort: education, industry, supply chain and government.

To achieve such significant changes, leadership teams must effectively coordinate action. This action will involve making hard decisions about cancelling or reprioritising projects and establishing a methodical and comprehensive long-term and sustainable implementation process.  

And the work has to start right now. As the Deputy Prime Minister said, “Work to implement the Review starts today, ensuring our ADF and our Defence personnel has the capability they need to keep Australians safe.” This highlights the urgency of the reforms and the need for leadership teams to be proactive in driving change.

Here are three things that a leadership team can do to be ready to implement change:

Within your Leadership team, take time to develop a clear and comprehensive understanding of the Defence Strategic Review and its implications: In a leadership team likely made of “doers”, resist the temptation to leap into action. Take the time to consider the implications & opportunities for your organisation. This will enable you to make informed decisions about the changes and develop a clear roadmap for implementation.

Foster a culture of agility and adaptability: The team must be able to collaborate, communicate, and problem-solve effectively. This culture will enable them to respond quickly and effectively to any challenges or roadblocks. You may likely need help here.

Establish a strong change management process: Implementing significant reforms will require a well-planned and methodical approach. You may likely need help here too.

In conclusion, effective leadership teams are crucial in enabling businesses to be agile, particularly during times of significant change. The recent Defence Strategic Review in Australia highlights the importance of leadership in implementing necessary reforms and the significant financial and methodological commitment required. It is now up to leadership teams to drive this process forward and ensure the reforms are implemented successfully.