Managing change takes constant navigation.
Similarities to a journey are apt. There can be slowdowns, obstacles, detours, and people wanting to know, ‘are we there yet’? There even can be ‘weather’, events elsewhere in the organization or the environment that influence how much progress can be made at any given
Our experience is that effective change management requires more than incentives, building a coalition, and quick wins. Those can help, but we’ve seen that sustainable change comes after four additional pieces are in place:
- Before starting: determining change readiness
- While underway: looking for weak signals and making course corrections accordingly
- From start to finish: keeping a constant focus on the external environment
- From before starting and lasting after the main part is done:over-communicating with staff
It takes constant adaptation. Individuals and circumstances change, too. The map of where you want to go is still valuable but requires deviations and course corrections all along the route. Forcing a change to stay on track simply because it was planned that way is counterproductive. Knowing the tolerance for change before starting takes the guesswork out of any adjustments.
We’ve implemented many changes projects, large and small, and seen them through to a successful conclusion. We suggest a reasonable period be built-in before any change project gets underway. The overall time to a positive outcome likely stays the same, but more time upfront means the process can proceed more quickly.
- Project design and validation
- Change readiness assessment
- Facilitation of sessions at key stages
- Issues management
- Identification or design of training programs as required
- Guidance to management or direct project leadership, as warranted
- Progress reporting at regular intervals or by milestones, or both
- 3 – 18 months
- The high degree of variability is influenced by the project scope and by emerging circumstances