For your change initiative to succeed, your stakeholders need to be willing and ready for change. Ensuring their readiness to change is an important part of both your change strategy and your organization’s culture. But how do you know if your hard work is paying off? How do you know if your people are psychologically ready to proceed with the change you are asking of them?
Most organizations have a range of internal change consultants, typically found in different departments, such as project management, organization development, change management, quality, process improvement, LEAN and Six Sigma, and IT. These consultants all add value to the change process, but not at the same time and not in the same way. None of them oversees the entire change process from A to Z, so there is an absence of strategic oversight to what all changes need across the organization. Inevitably, value is left on the table.
The journey of organizational change – especially tranformation – is anything but a straight line. If you are making changes that are transformational, it is likely things will be unruly, unpredictable, and messy in the process. Because of this uncertainty, the best course of action is to plan your change and future state as best you can, and then establish a mechanism and process to course correct your plans and outcomes as you discover the need to do so. Transformational leadership is not about sticking to the rigid intention of “make the Plan; follow the Plan!”
How do you define success in your organization’s change efforts? Without giving this question much conscious thought, the change leaders, project managers, or the change consutlants may say “solve the problem.” Or “get the solution implemented.” Or “meet the deadline and budget.” These are all legitimate answers, and common ones. However, when you ask this question of senior leaders at the very beginning of their change initiative, their answers will shed light on how they think about change as well as the process they will support to get their outcomes.
We are happy to announce that we were recently named Qualified Education Providers for Certified Change Management Professionals (CCMP™).
A powerful way to generate momentum and readiness for organizational transformation is to consciously build a critical mass of support for your new directions. Remember the “snowball effect”? It is a great metaphor for this acceleration strategy. Where we typically focus a lot of energy on overcoming the influence of resistors, a critical mass strategy is a way to create employee engagement and move resistors without a lot of attention. Here’s how: