What is Change Management?

In order to successfully perform change management in organisations, you need to be able to transform the employees and the company from the old ways into the new in a harmonious way.

Change Management Institutional Change Innovation Leadership
  • Release Date: 28 December 2021
  • Update Date: 15 March 2024
  • Author: Speaker Agency
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Change management will result in success when carefully planned. As an institution, you can successfully adapt to change with the right strategy planned to protect or even increase internal productivity, motivation and efficiency. 

It’s not uncommon to see in business life that companies need change and this change needs to be implemented carefully. What we call change management is a combined effort to put together methods and manners of change that is described by the company.  The implementation of the change affects the company’s internal and external processes and it includes preparing and supporting employees as well as establishing the necessary steps for change.

Monitoring pre and post change activities is a must to ensure a successful implementation. In this aspect, in order to manage the transition or the transformation of goals, processes and technologies of an organisation, there needs to be a systematic approach and this is what we call change management.

There are certain parts of change management which are known as effecting change, controlling change and helping people adapt to change. Each of these activities come with a different set of difficulties as organisational change management can be quite challenging. In any organisation, many levels of cooperation and different independent bodies need to be involved to ensure productive results. It is crucial to develop a structured approach -regardless of the management model- and to have the tools and techniques necessary for a successful change management.  

Managemental Process and Change Management

As a systematic approach, change management includes mechanisms that enable you to deal with the change of objectives and processes in organisations and to control this change. The main purpose of change management is to create strategies for the organisation and its employees to adapt to change. However, an effective change management strategy must take a few vital elements into consideration. Understanding how adjustment or replacement will impact processes, systems and employees within the organisation is significant.

Managing change effectively is not easy. A successful implementation of the strategy must include a process for planning and testing change, communicating change, scheduling and applying change, documenting change and evaluating its effects.   

In order to be successful in today's world where innovation is the goal, individuals and organisations have to keep up with the pace of the world adapting to change. Organisations can make changes in their roles, organisational structures or technologies used in the company in order to increase performance and take advantage of existing opportunities. Every organisation builds its own implementation of change management however, principles of change management remain the same. In order to implement change management all parties involved must understand the progress through various stages. Results are seen as the change happens.

The To Do List for Implementing Change Management

i) The change needs to be defined
ii) Management team and management professionals need to be selected
iii) Implementation plan including metrics needs to be developed
ıv) Change needs to be implemented gradually or in stages
v) Data collection and data analyses should be done
vı) Gaps need to be quantified and resistance must be evaluated
vıı) If necessary, modification of the plan is carried out and implementation activities are continued 

An organisation has to be willing to apply the concepts and the tools of change management to specific areas of business in order to get a grasp of how change management works. Change management works differently in project management, information technologies infrastructure and software development.

Let’s not forget technological change and development will help increase the business volume and speed of the company. However, such changes require changes in the way of doing business. If employees do not learn and adopt a new way of working and fail personally, the organisation's initiatives may also fail. With the correctly-planned change management, employees can easily adapt to innovation without compromising their productivity.

What are the Stages of Change Management?

As a leader, you can make the right plans and advance in a systematic setup so that your employees internalise the change. Change management basically has four stages.

  1. Reducing the Possible Shock: When change is introduced in a company or organisation, the first reaction is often shock. Only a few people understand why change is necessary and some may react to their managers with resistance to change. To overcome this situation, you can start by making sure that there is healthy communication within the organisation in the first place. You can answer questions to resolve ambiguities and encourage employees on how to deal with change if they need it. As people begin to get information, the shock may begin to wear off.
  2. Coping with Fear: Once the shock wears off, it can be replaced by fear. People instinctively ask, “What will happen to me now?” They may have negative thoughts. You can allow employees to express their feelings and concerns. Their reactions can be personal and sometimes emotional. In this case, you can respond to your employees concerns by listening to them sincerely,
  3. Acceptance: After employees express their fears and get answers to their questions as a result of successful communication with the leaders, they can begin to calm down and accept the situation. At this point, you can train your employees on innovations and support them in the way that the changes will bring. You can emphasise that every change is actually a new opportunity and increase efficiency accordingly.
  4. Change: Now that employees voiced their fears and concerns, understood the truth, tested their limits, they’re ready for change. They can now focus on the new rather than their former positions. By thinking about the benefits they can provide to the institution, they can turn the process into a positive one and see the positive effects of the change.

There are several models for managing change. They provide guiding principles and help managers align the scope of proposed changes with available digital and non-digital tools and techniques. One of the most popular practice models is the ADKAR model which was created by Jeff Hiatt. ADKAR model, an acronym of the first words of five steps is as follows:

Awareness of the need of change
Desire to participate and support the change
Knowledge on how to change
Ability to implement desired skills and behaviours
Reinforcement to sustain the change.

Bridge’s Transition Model and Kotter’s 8-Step Process for Leading Change are some other models which can be adapted for organisational change management. 

Organizational Change Management

In order to be successful in corporate change management (or organizational change management), you need to plan the change management stages in detail and meticulously determine the goals that will make your organization successful. You usually create your organizational change management plan to make use of new technologies, manage the costs of change, and eliminate the disruptive aspects and risks which might come with it.

This way, you can respond more efficiently to the challenges that arise during change and avoid the risk of disrupting the routine in the functioning of the institution. Creating and executing an effective change management strategy can help you minimise resistance to change and reduce the stress and anxiety associated with change.

There are situations where changes fail and they fail for human reasons. When the promoters of the change do not attend to the healthy, real and predictable reactions of normal people to the disturbance of their routines, change does not hold a chance to take place. This is the human side of change management and it is vital to have effective communication for effective change.   

Please watch the videos of our well-known change management speakers, such as Erica Dhawan, Peter Hinssen, Azran Osman Rani and Yves Morieux who can guide you, or listen to their podcasts, or invite them to your company and you can help your team to get a share of the knowledge and vision our speakers have.

You can also visit our page and contact us for more information about other speakers on Change Management.

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