For many organisations developing organisational change management capability and capacity is a 5 to 10 year journey. It demands effort, investment, goal setting and planning. As expert change management practitioners, we regularly interact with organisations who are excited by the idea of building change capabilities but soon discover that they do not yet have the infrastructure in place to make it happen.
For some our interaction results in a complete transformation in why and how the entire organisation thinks, reacts to and handles change. For some this journey is the beginning of what noted author Simon Sinek and game theory calls an infinite game. From our experience of working alongside these organisations, I have created a list of the top 4 tips to develop enterprise level change capability that will start to increase the agility and the responsiveness of your organisation. Applying the following tips to your organisation will increase the likelihood of organisational change success.
1. The Adoption of a Proven Change Management Methodology
Following a disciplined, structured and straight forward approach to change deployment helps to build change management capabilities into the foundations of an enterprise through its consistency. An increasing number of organisations are now turning to a proven methodology that puts emphasis on building management’s change knowledge and improving the change infrastructure and processes in place.
It should be noted at this point that best practices show that one methodology should be selected, customised and implemented across the entire organisation. It may be tempting to practice more than one methodology to address multiple change aspects, but this may end up hindering you in the long-term. Different methodologies will have their own techniques to tackle organisational change which may be conflicting and therefore could lead to confusion. This may make co-ordinating change activities and monitoring change progress far more complicated than it actually needs to be. So why give change leaders more work than necessary?
The Prosci ADKAR model is a commonly favoured change management methodology due to its ease of use. When selecting the best approach to build your organisation’s change capabilities, it is essential that you consider how complicated the model is to ensure it is accepted across the entire organisation.
2. Capture Sponsorship for Change
You may be aware that a lack of acceptance and interest, particularly from leadership, in building enterprise level change capabilities has been reported as one of the core catalysts of unsuccessful organisational change. This is purely due to leadership’s ability to set the tone of how change is managed, promoted and perceived throughout the organisation. Their promotion of the value of enterprise change management will ultimately determine how change is implemented into an organisation’s operations and culture. They are extremely well-placed to set the overall vision and direction and to communicate directly to employees about why developing change capabilities is important.
The organisation must assist the sponsor with materials, plans, and activities to encourage and drive enterprise change capabilities. Providing hands-on and visible support to sponsors will give them a clear understanding of what their role and responsibilities are, and ultimately give them the necessary skills and capabilities to facilitate change throughout the organisation.
3. Integrate Change Management with Project Management
To deploy effective enterprise change management, it must be treated similarly to that of a project, which involves structure and a set of planned actions that are monitored by management and delivered by their team. Having a set list of initial objectives that you want to achieve will make it easier to monitor progress and evaluate how your organisation’s change capabilities have developed over time. Building a dedicated team consisting of individuals from different business functions and levels within the organisation will definitely help to improve change capabilities.
If you are not treating enterprise change like a project then you may find that you have several activities happening at once, but your organisation is not moving any further forward due to them not being planned efficiently. To understand more about this, we provide a one-day Prosci Enterprise Change Management Boot Camp. Click here to learn more about why you should attend and what you will learn.
4. Utilising a Holistic Approach
Organisations who are serious about building change management capabilities recognise that it goes beyond just training their employees. It takes a village. It involves establishing skills and tactics across multiple areas including leadership, projects, skills, structures and process. It is not enough to just consider one of these areas. All must be considered with action plans in place in order to develop change capabilities. Ensuring your organisation is prepared with well thought out approaches that are sustainable, effective and accepted throughout the organisation is key.
Through following these 4 tips, you can make a start on change management practice that should become the norm within your organisation. If you found this article useful and are interested in learning more invaluable tips that will increase your organisational change management capabilities, then I would recommend clicking on the link below to take you to a list of our different change management courses that follow the Prosci change management methodology and will equip you with the essential skills and framework to transform the responsiveness of your organisation.