The State of Change Management…

Time For Change

The State of Change Management…

I ran across this article; HBR Article: Change Management Needs To Change just after having a conversation with a client about the effectiveness of and openness to Change Management.  Many businesses / leaders here in the U.S. have become disenchanted with Change Management.  Not because they don’t see it as important, but because of the high failure rate of change management initiatives.

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This article says it so well!

  • “most studies still show a 60-70% failure rate for organizational change projects — a statistic that has stayed constant from the 1970’s to the present.”. That is quite staggering…..but WHY such a high failure rate and for so long?
    • The article goes on to suggest that while it could be that the change management content/methods/theories out there are “off” and need rethinking…….

OR…. (and this is what I think is SO brilliantly true):

    • “the managerial capacity to implement it has been woefully underdeveloped. In fact, instead of strengthening managers’ ability to manage change, we’ve instead allowed managers to outsource change management to HR specialists and consultants instead of taking accountability themselves— an approach that often doesn’t work.”

Our takeaways from the thought provoking questions posed …

  1. About ensuring a common language, framework and set of tools/resources to support change
    • In order to make it a part of how leaders operate, there needs to be a common language that they share on it (with each other and with their teams as they move through teams).  Aside from that, giving them a simple framework that supports that language and a set of tools and resources to reference becomes a critical first step in even asking them to play a role in change!
  2. Integration of change efforts into project plans (not a separate thing)
    • To manage the “change” efforts independently keeps these efforts “separate” from what the business is trying to accomplish – isn’t change part of what needs to be accomplished? Isn’t it more effective if woven into the efforts of the players involved?
  3. Ownership in the right hands
    • Companies do all too often tend to farm out the Change Management efforts to the experts; Org effectiveness, HR, external consultants, etc.  This not only enables managers to see it as someone else’s role, but prevents them from building the skills needed to manage their teams through it.  Change is coming at us more rapidly than ever.  I see the skill of leading change as critical for any leader.

Our approach facilitates change in a natural, systemic way as it builds the skills, provides the tools & resources to leaders and teaches them to fish. This puts the accountability in the RIGHT hands, the leaders/managers hands, but also equips them to take it on! Our approach is focused on teaching leaders to fish.  We give them the tools to effectively solve business problems at the team level generating ownership & accountability while building their skills…all in the context of their business challenges and changes!

How is your organization approaching change?

Contact us for more information!


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