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The transformation office: One source of truth: A conversation with Chris Angevine and Darius Bates

Successful transformations need a proven system to track results.
To align results with targets, companies need one central place where everyone can find vital information. In this video, McKinsey senior associate partners Chris Angevine and Darius Bates discuss the value of McKinsey’s proprietary program-management solution, Wave.

Interview transcript

Darius: Transformations aren’t easy. When organizations underperform and fail to reach their full potential, it’s usually due to several factors. One is the need to establish what I call “one source of truth.”

In the road-mapping phase, companies develop lots of initiatives. To make these initiatives a reality, a lot of people will have to be singing from the same sheet of music. We recommend that our clients leverage a software platform we’ve developed called Wave to track all of the initiatives from start to finish, forming a single source of truth for the transformation office.

Chris: A client of mine would get frustrated because he would hear that everything was tracking on target. But then, when he would step back and look at the financial performance of the business, he wasn’t hitting his goals. So it was very confusing for him to try to figure out, “Why do my ten initiative owners all say they’re on target, but our financials are missing the target?”

The answer was the company lacked a central single source of truth. For example, you may have people double counting on values, causing multiple people to claim impact on the same customers from different initiatives.

In reality, although all the initiatives were working as planned, they didn't have this central clearinghouse or single source of truth that Darius was describing.

Darius: A number of conversations happen every week in the transformation office that need to be supported with data. They also need to know all the necessary action steps for each initiative, who’s responsible for these steps, and whether those people have performed their tasks.

It’s mission-critical that everyone can go to one central place for vital information, including the most important initiatives and the targeted value assigned to each initiative.

Chris: With this single source of truth, executives can see at any given moment how much opportunity they’ve captured. It shows them if they’re tracking against the plan.

Darius: After checking their progress in this way, companies can leverage those insights to determine the best way forward.

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