Over the past three years, most businesses would have undergone five major organization-wide changes. In the next three years, roughly 75% of organizations expect to increase the number of change initiatives they will undertake.
Unfortunately, only 34% of change initiatives are successful. Half of them end in failure.
Chances are your organization will also undergo one or more major changes in the next few years. You can help to ensure it is successful by using a structured approach to change management.
There are many benefits of change management. They can be achieved when the change process is well-managed. With this in mind, your organization can successfully implement major changes as well.
What Is Change Management?
Change Management is a well-defined approach that helps an organization successfully plan and implement change.
It’s the framework used to understand and support the change and its effects on employees and the organization.
Enterprise Change Management is an emerging trend that builds on an organization’s competencies and capabilities. It deploys the process across the organization instead of focusing on individual projects.
Change management should be carefully planned and should effectively manage the risks and challenges encountered throughout the change process.
Define the Change
The change management process should begin by defining the important elements of the change. This should include the content, purpose, context, process and people affected by the change.
- Content – defines what the change is
- Purpose – defines the reasons why the change is taking place
- Context – defines the environment where the change is taking place
- Process – outlines the activities and approaches applied to manage the change and should be relevant to the context and content
- People – takes into account employees’ views on the change, their ideas, and willingness to commit to the change.
When defining the change, consider the following principles:
- Ensure it isn’t harmful
- Ensure it is something you can abide by, which will more likely mean others will abide by it too
- Admit lack of knowledge when and where necessary
- Remember that if individuals don’t change, then these individuals can’t change those around them.
It’s also important that the implementation and communication of change should start from a strength-based position. Build on the strengths of the organization by focusing on the positives – things that the organization currently does well.
Stages of Change Management
The stages of change management involve a sequence of well-defined steps that help to effectively manage the change process. They include:
Step 1 – Identifying the change by understanding the problem and the requirements needed to fix it.
Step 2 – Analyzing the change by determining the feasibility of the change, how long it will take to achieve, and its cost.
Step 3 – Evaluating the change by weighing the costs and benefits and deciding if the change is worth it.
Step 4 – Planning the change by analyzing the impact of the change, developing an implementation plan, and communicating the benefits of the change. Use management of change tools in this stage to help create a successful implementation plan. To learn more read on here.
Step 5 – Implementing the change by establishing schedules, training employees, assigning tasks and ensuring their execution, and communicating the changes.
Step 6 – Sustaining the change by validating and measuring progress, closing and reviewing the process, and evaluating the successes and failures of the change.
Execution of each stage is crucial to the success of the process. Success will ensure customers, employees and the organization feel its benefits.
Benefits of Change Management
It’s important to know the benefits of change management. Use them to plan the process and focus on the areas that need greater attention. They can also help motivate employees and be used to assess the progress of the change.
Some organizational benefits include:
- It encourages a better understanding of the change and allows a more effective assessment of its impact
- It allows the reassignment of resources to support the change
- It reduces the time needed to implement the change
- It helps in the planning and execution of an effective communication strategy
- Its implementation does not adversely affect day-to-day operations
- It increases the chances of the change being successful
- It creates an opportunity for the development of best practices in the organization
Employee benefits include:
- It helps staff understand the change process
- It improves collaboration and cooperation in the change process
- It reduces any resistance to the change
- It reduces the stress and anxiety associated with change
There are many additional benefits that allow organizations to reduce their costs and respond faster to customer needs.
Why Choose Change Management?
The benefits of change management have been well-documented since it became a formal discipline in the 1990s. Organizations can learn from the history of change management. But they can also explore some of the types of change management available and the developments in managing change.
Change is inevitable. There are many tools and resources available that can help organizations through the process of change. They can help your organization too.