How to Catalyst Transformation

“The greatest danger in times of turbulence is not the turbulence — it is to act with yesterday’s logic.” — Peter Drucker.

Juan Carlos Sánchez📚
3 min readMay 23, 2024

Companies face complex challenges such as technological disruption in today's business environment. Transformation catalysts are the new role that helps businesses navigate these challenges and drive transformation. But what exactly are transformation catalysts, and how do they work in the business world?

What Are Transformation Catalysts?

Transformation catalysts are individuals specifically designed to catalyze transformative action by connecting, cohering, and amplifying the efforts of existing initiatives in various contexts. They aim to create significant, systemic changes by fostering collaboration across initiatives.

The Role of Transformation Catalysts

The primary role of transformation catalysts is to foster collaboration among otherwise disconnected transformation initiatives, creating a unified approach. This involves:

  • Understanding and Analysis: The dynamics of their transformation systems and initiatives, including the participants and their interactions.
  • Connecting Actors: Bringing together diverse stakeholders to foster strategic actions from a collective perspective.
  • Supporting Implementation: Facilitating the execution of strategies and actions to ensure cohesive and amplified efforts toward transformation.

Tasks of Transformation Catalysts

To achieve their goals, they engage in several key activities:

  • Create a System Picture: Identifying and understanding systems and stakeholders' current state. This can include mapping and analyzing data to provide a clear system picture.
  • Build Bridges: Establishing networks and relationships among various actors to ensure coordinated and synergistic efforts. This can involve organizing meetings, facilitating dialogues, and creating platforms for collaboration.
  • Encourage Action and Learning: Encouraging innovative and experimental actions that can drive significant change. This includes creating safe spaces for experimentation and sharing the outcomes and learnings from these initiatives.

How Can Catalysts Help?

  1. Creating Synergy: They bring together various initiatives, ensuring efforts are not fragmented but work towards a common goal.
  2. Accelerating Transformation: Catalysts can speed the transformation process by fostering collaboration and innovation.
  3. Amplifying Impact: Through their strategic approach, Catalysts enhance the overall impact of individual efforts, making significant strides in addressing complex challenges.


Transformation catalysts create synergy by bringing together various initiatives, ensuring that efforts are not fragmented but work towards a common goal. By fostering collaboration and innovation, catalysts enable and accelerate the transformation process.

Their strategic approach amplifies the overall impact of individual efforts, making significant strides in addressing complex challenges. Embracing the role of transformation catalysts can help businesses achieve deep, systemic changes, leading to a more sustainable, competitive, and prosperous future.

References: Waddock, S., & Waddell, S. (2021). Transformation Catalysts: Weaving Transformational Change for a Flourishing World for All. Cadmus Journal, 4(4), 165–182.

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Disclaimer: This post was created with the help of AI tools to improve efficiency, required hours of dedicated writing, and contains my experience in the field.



Juan Carlos Sánchez📚

🔎 Exploring Leadership and Digital Transformation. Bridging the Gap between Technology, Business, and People.