Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Three-Step Change Management Scenario

People (50%) + Process (25%) + Tools (25%) (in that order) = Results. 

Organizations large or small are on the journey of digital transformation, however, there’s always cultural frictions to changes. Usually, there is a failure to have a discussion at all levels of the organization on the following three questions before getting into the details: 1) Are we willing to change? 2) At what rate are we willing to change? 3) What is the reward for embarking on a process of change? Too often top management says they need to change or selects a set of numbers relative to goals and then unleashes a fancy name program on the organization and says "Charge”! So it's no surprise that won't work. Then what are the logical steps for managing the change process and sustaining the change outcome?

Step 1: Make sure there is dissatisfaction with the current situation. The people that make up the organization must see a compelling need to change from risky practices, obsolete ideas, processes and do so proactively before issues materialize. It also helps when people believe things will improve by changing, innovating, upgrading, etc. Unless there is a realization that the status quo does not work, it makes any shift unlikely and challenging. One aspect is that this is making the dissatisfaction relevant to them or at the very least a chain from the principle driver to them. There are so many instances where the change was 'the people at the top want everyone to use X piece of software to provide greater shareholder value.' For the vast majority of people this is going to mean get and keep people engaged:  Start with "why" the change (why we need to change, why now, etc?), then get into the "what" (what or who is driving the change), "how", "when", "where", etc. very little and quite a leap to see where this links into their own dissatisfaction with the current situation. The problem is that without the organization understanding why change is necessary and identifying those willing to champion the effort, the results may appear in the numbers but not in the attitude of employees who can actually make the process work to meet and exceed the goals. A camel is a horse designed by a committee. The larger the organization embarking on the process of change, the uglier the camel will be.

Step 2: Buy-in The successful change requires buy-in. Make everyone aware that there is a better way and explain it smoothly. Buy-in means giving people a chance to understand why the change is necessary and getting them to participate in defining the better process and then ensuring they are actively involved in the monitoring of that process to ensure they have a voice in improving it, should it require some adjustments after being deployed. To ensure process change lasts, the key is engagement with the impacted staff who will use the process, you can create some great processes but unless the staff buy-in,  it won't be fully adopted or old habits will creep back in. Coach people to shift from the belief that change is "loss" to a belief that change leads to "growth" and growth leads to organizational viability, relevance, and stability. Life changes. Nothing stays the same. When your people grow, the organization grows. Create a culture of growth. Communicate the need for agility so that you'll all enjoy a growing and healthy organization. Ultimately, it is the people throughout your organization who will be executing the process change once implemented. You want a process to last where it is still valid and effective, but more often than not, it is the people who use it day-to-day; who can see ways to improve, so you need a two-way dialogue and you don't hit the same point where you have to re-engineer processes. Process change then becomes part of continuous improvement. It's also wise to have change champions who lead change on the company's terms and timelines so the organization can stay relevant and healthy in a rapidly changing world.

Step 3: Get it right - Prepare - Implement - Automate. Make sure everyone believes they can implement and sustain the better way. To be successful, you need a streamlined management to deal with ideas, discussion, funding and empowering at low levels the implementation and rewarding for achieving results. Proper preparation, implementation, and automation make change more likely to succeed and be more sustainable.

-Prepare: Even if you get the first two steps right, you can fail because you have not prepared the organization for the change to come. Preparing will make or break the implementation.
-Implement: With strong preparation, implementation success is not guaranteed unless you have a well thought out implementation and deployment plan. Sharing this plan will also help prepare your teams. This also aligns with enterprise risk management in that the organization could be a risk of real harm if the company does not assess and manage risk. This usually involves making proactive changes to how business is done.
-Automate: Once you have a very well defined process and it is understood by all, you should move to automating as much as you can. Automation ensures less divergence in the execution and often allows for much better data gathering on the KPIs that matter most.

Although there's no universal change formula. Here is the one which does make sense: People (50%) + Process (25%) + Tools (25%) (in that order) = Results. Sustainable results are much more achievable when people willingly drive processes and processes drive the tools, techniques, or actions that people employ. It is important to get the change right. Trying to get an entire organization to change quickly, or to change reluctantly in many cases, is not likely to happen. To keep up with today's change and market disruption requires agility, speed, and resourcefulness. That requires the right people: the change champions, the effective process, and productive tools well tuned to make it happen.


Nice post!!! Change management emphasizes the people side of progress and targets leadership inside all levels of an association including administrators, senior leaders, middle supervisors and line supervisors. Change Management Training Program In India

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