The long-term success of all change initiatives relies heavily on reinforcement, as without it, people will naturally revert to the state with which they are most familiar and therefore comfortable with. Yet, because the idea of reinforcing changed behaviour seems like the next step of a change management approach, it is often not considered in the development of the initial strategy.
By the time change leaders reach the end of one change project, they have become absorbed in the next. Meaning that ensuring the project continues and is sustained while you begin a new project is often forgotten about.
We have covered three ways in which you can being to ensure your change initiative sticks and becomes permanent within your organisation. Or, if you would like to begin taking the first steps in change implementation, take a look at our list of upcoming courses.
1. Support from leadership
Leadership support is vital throughout your entire project. Not only is it required for conducting change management, but also to ensure the project is seen through to the end. Reinforcement takes time, work hours, budget, and a leader standing up and telling the organisation that all of this is a necessary part of the change and that their change management work is not over yet.
2. Measuring process
Specific metrics will vary from project to project, but it is crucial to ensure you these metrics measure the progress on the project. How can we know if adoption is successful if we are not measuring it? In order to find this information out, it is important to understand what data would be useful before anything is measured.
3. Communications that encourage feedback
There are times when communication needs to be direct, concise and brief to avoid any confusion or debate. However, when looking to ensure your change remains permanent within the organisation, it's vital communication at this stage remains open and relaxed. Honest feedback should be encouraged in order to first understand where change needs sustainment to survive. Further, when impacted groups feel heard and supported, they are much more likely to look on the change positively and make an effort to ensure it works.
Want to learn more?
We have condensed the true value of change management and insights into some of the lessons learned by practitioners and consultants into an easy to understand infographic which you can download for free.