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Chuck Kosal is the Chief Transformation Officer at Deloitte Tax LLP, the US tax function of the global firm Deloitte. Deloitte has a total of around 312,000 employees around the world and the US tax function is made up of around 12,000 of those employees. They were actually named “Americas Tax Technology Firm of the Year” for the 2nd year in a row by the International Tax Review.

Deloitte Tax is working to create digital innovation that helps its clients adapt to accelerating globalization, increased regulatory and business complexities and other significant transformational changes in the corporate landscape. And in order to accomplish this the organization has to continually evolve to keep up with the needs of their clients.

Part of Chuck’s role is to help the organization navigate change and transformation. This can be a very challenging task because people tend to resist change. Chuck says, “You think in any conversation people always embrace change, they talk about how they want things to be better, how they want things to be different, but the reality is often, human nature is they want everybody around them to change, they think what they’re doing is pretty spiffy, right? And so I could share an anecdotal example of a current technology we have in place, that everybody has complained about for a number of years. We announce that we’re gonna change it and people scream and yell and drop to the floor and kick and scream like my youngest child, that, “don’t take it away for me this terrible technology.” So, it’s every day is spent navigating the organization, navigating the stakeholders, doing audience analysis to ensure I understand what’s in it for the other side, showing empathy.”

Deloitte Tax is going through a digital transformation. As Chuck describes it, they are “trying to go from doing digital to being digital”. They realize that their clients are used to the quick and seamless interactions with companies like Amazon, Uber, Google and these clients are going to expect the same service from Deloitte as well.

When it comes to organizational transformation Chuck says one of the biggest pitfalls companies encounter is the fear of taking the first step.

“You’ll hear a lot and I’m sure on your podcast, this idea of being bold. You don’t actually need to be bold, you need to be brave. And you need to take the first step towards a change and I see that in the context of transformation. Digital or otherwise, any types of business transformation, even personal transformation, it’s the first step that’s the hardest. When you think about, it’s that first workout that’s the hardest, it’s the first investment you make that’s the hardest. And so I would say that’s the biggest challenge that I would tell people. It’s an easy challenge to overcome, just take your first step. Big or small, just take a step and see how it goes. And you might find that it’s not as bad as you think and you might actually get some results that will inspire you to take a bigger step next time. But don’t let paralysis be the enemy. Don’t let this idea of how change might… What the outcome of change might be to not actually try it. And so I would say that’s it, it’s take that first step.”

What You Will Learn In This Episode:
What does a Chief Transformation Officer do
A look at the trends Chuck is paying attention to
How Deloitte is moving from doing digital to being digital
How Chuck and his team are utilizing technology
How companies can keep up with new technologies
How to deal with change and approach people who are resistant to change
The role of empathy in business
Some of the pitfalls or mistakes companies make when going through a transformation

Huge thanks to VMware for sponsoring this episode! If you want a free copy of my upcoming book ‘The Future Leader’, visit this link.