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Module 2: Change Management and Communication

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Why Worry about Change Management?

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Change Management and Communication
Why Worry about Change Management?

What is Change Management?

Change management is the process of dealing with the impact of change in an organisation.

Types of change include:

Process change
Organisational restructure / reorganisation
Culture change
Staff levels
IT / System implementation
Facilities / locations change

What is Change Managemet? - Continued

When done well, change management accelerates the successful implementation of a change initiative. It achieves this by using strategies to deal with the impact that changes of the types outlined above have on people.

The success of any change initiative depends on the ability of the people involved to accept and embrace the desired change. It is important to understand change as a social process that is, to know and understand the effects it has on people.

Change management is about supporting individual employees impacted by the desired change to manage their own transition process. It is necessary because organisational change - moving from a current organisational state to a future organisational state - ultimately impacts on the way in which people do their jobs.

Key Definitions

Below are a range of key definitions used when discussing change management:

Buy-in

Acceptance and commitment to the change, especially those impacted by the change.

Sponsorship

Support and commitment by the organisation’s leaders to the
change.

Stakeholders

Those individuals (not necessarily just employees) who are affected by the change.

Phases of Change

Change involves movement from the current state (how things are today), through to a state of transition, and finally a future state (how things will be done).

People deal with change in different ways, often depending on their personal experiences with change in the past.

The diagram below shows the phases people go through when dealing with change:

Phases of Change (Continued)

You can often identify the stage people are at by their actions and behaviours. Look and listen for:

Denial and/or resistance
Stress
Cynicism
Leaving
Silence

Getting Change Right

To get change right, you will need the following:

Sponsorship

This is a critical factor in the success of a change. Ensuring there is active sponsorship for the change at a senior executive level within your organisation, and engaging this sponsorship to achieve the desired results, is essential.

Buy-in

Gain buy-in for the changes from those involved and affected, directly or indirectly.

Involvement

Involve the right people in the design and implementation of changes, to make sure the right changes are made.

Getting Change Right (Continued)

Other important steps involved in getting change right include:

IMPACT - Assess and address how the changes will affect people.

COMMUNICATION - Tell everyone who is affected about the changes, and listen to concerns.

READINESS - Get people ready to adapt to the changes, by ensuring they have the right information, training and help.

Getting change right is a complicated process that can have sever implications on the success of a business, further tips include:

Tips

• Have a great leader

• Know your stakeholders

• Identify what‘s in it for them
• Involve the right people

• Support impacted employees

• Establish two-way communication channels
• Assess the level of readiness

Know Your Risks

It is important to have an understanding of the risks you are addressing with your change initiative. This helps to identify the priority activities that need to be undertaken and provides recommended actions to enable you to be proactive in managing the change effort. Identifying risks will:

Allow for the proper degree of attention and focus on the impacted people

Allow you to identify the situational enablers and barriers

Provide you with a proactive means to engage stakeholder groups

Provide you with an opportunity to drive two-way communication around resistance areas

Help you understand the organisational capacity for change.

Understand the Benefits of Change

It is important to clearly understand what you are changing, why you are changing it and the benefits of the change.

Having a clear vision will ensure that the reasons for the change are clear to stakeholders, and will help you to stay focused on the end result. You should be able to clearly state what you are moving away from and what you will be moving to.

It is useful to consider the benefits of the change in terms of the organisation, people, technology and finance. By plotting these benefits you can start to identify the messages that can be used with your stakeholders, given their particular areas of interest or concern.

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