4 Essential Skills of a Change Management Leader

    May 14, 2020 | Posted by Michael Campbell

    You might have wondered what individual skills someone needs to be a successful change management practitioner? Is it the ability to communicate effectively, or to use critical thinking and carry out strategic planning? The answer is that change practitioners rely on a wide array of skills to successfully achieve project goals. To guide you through the characteristics of a person and the core expertise needed to enact organisational change, we have noted four essentials skills that we believe makes a change practitioner.

    1. Advanced Communication Skills

    Almost every job requires communication, however, change practitioners need to have very strong communications skills. Excellent communication is vital as their role involves direct communication with individuals at various levels across an organisation. These internal audiences have different considerations and a change practitioner is able to contextualise the relevant information to match the challenges of each specific role.

    Change practitioners work closely with senior leader Sponsors and Line Managers sharing best change management practices and activities needed for change to be successfully implemented and adopted. As a result, they must be easily approachable and straightforward when it comes to organisation’s ability to successfully manage change initiatives. Telling the truth about the actual situation to senior management will help to eliminate problems and create a way of working together towards achieving project goals.

    The leaders of change must focus their efforts on gaining senior executive support for implementing required change initiatives. Sometimes it starts by making the business case for investing in change management to influential sponsors within an organisation.  Therefore, they must be able to correspond, influence and communicate the value of effective change management in order to achieve competitive advantage. 

    2. Expert in Coaching 

    Change management practitioners are often seen as the designers of the change management strategy. Part of this designer role is developing and supporting the ability of line managers to coach employees in their required role in a specific change initiative. To fulfill this aspect they must possess up-to-date change management knowledge, a solid understanding of change methodologies, frameworks, and best practices; combined with an exceptional ability to apply key change frameworks through different individual and group workshops and other interventions. 

    3. Posses Strategic Thinking Skills 

    They must have a vision for achieving change management goals and look towards creating strategic plans for the future. Change practitioners should have the ability to take advantage of change management methodologies and tailor them to the specific project or change initiative.

    The long-term change management strategies must always be positioned in the forefront of their mind to ensure that the organisation never stays behind. It's vital to be able to move forward and take advantage of any opportunity to tackle change management as effectively as possible.

    As required they can strategically assess what projects or new initiatives will directly impact the way in which employees work, and build plans to mitigate employee resistance and in general help them to appreciate the change.

    4. Project Management Leadership Skills

    Following the Prosci methodology, effective change leaders should assess how individuals are affected by change to ensure the new initiative is supported and adopted by everyone within the organisation. They must have the necessary project management knowledge, skills and tools to be able to implement successful change projects. This will involve outlining project goals, identifying responsibilities and assessing available resources. Similar to project management, they will need to review the outcomes of the change, and what progress still needs to be implemented.

    Ready to learn more?

    If you are interested in developing change and project management skills to become a Prosci certified change practitioner, register for our upcoming Virtual Prosci Practitioner Certification Programme. 

    The Prosci course covers:

    - Prosci® ADKAR® Model
    - Sponsorship 
    - Communications 
    - Resistance Management 
    - Concepts of Change
    - Return on Investment (ROI) 

    Get in touch to find out more or download the certification brochure.  

    Did you know that we provide Change Management Courses to Organisations all over the world?

    CMC Asia provides private training and support for organisations all over the world. Learn how we can help you develop change management capability within your company, or contact our Singapore team to discuss your requirements.

    Topics: Managing Change