Checklist – Are you change ready?

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Checklist – Are you change ready?

Is your organisation looking to makes changes this financial year? It might be introducing new software, a relocation or acquiring a new business.

There is enough research around, particularly from the world renowned change management company Prosci, that you need to seriously plan how you are going to approach your change project with change management.

Prosci’s change management methodology is developed based on research with over 3,400 participants over the last twenty years. What is unique about the methodology is that it comes from real project leaders and teams reflecting on what worked, what did not and what they would do differently on their next project.

And there’s the link. Every change is a project and project is a change.

Here are just few things to consider for your change project:

  • Do you have a sponsor for the change? – This is someone with influence who can lead the change, be active and visible throughout the change and can develop a sponsor coalition to lead and cascade influence through the organisation
  • Do you have a change management strategy? – This is a plan of how you are going to tackle the change and engage people within the organisation
  • Have you dedicated resources to change management? – This includes budget to fund the actual change, but just as importantly the human resources to manage the strategy, the people side of the change and the plans such as communication, training and coaching managers on their role in the process. This very much involves buy in and engagement from your senior executive team to gain these resources.
  • Do you have a project plan? – This includes timelines, milestones etc but also it needs to be integrated with your change management plan, ie your plan for the people side of the change. It’s all about engagement to execute the change
  • Do you have engagement with your mid managers – 48% of mid managers resist change projects. Are they on the bus? You firstly need to identify where the resistance is to the change and why it exists. And secondly, do your mid managers have the skills and mindset to be able to coach their teams through the change?
  • Do you have a Communication plan? – This is all about identifying the different levels within in your organisation and determining the specific messages they need to hear about the change and in a way that appeals to them. And they need to hear it more than once! It’s not about a ‘blanket approach’ of one email fits all.

Change is a big deal. If not done well it will cost you. The costs come from not meeting project objectives, the reduced impact of the investment in the change itself (eg the cost of the software) and the negative impact on your people (stress, loss of productivity, resignations).

From the Prosci 2016 Benchmarking study, of the 245 companies who participated in the research, 94% met or exceeded project objectives.

So if the above checklist sees you answering no to one or all of the points, the implementation of your change will suffer.

If you would like to talk further about your changes, please feel free to get in touch as we are as Accredited Prosci Change Management Practitioners.

Acknowledgement to Best Practices in Change Management. Prosci Benchmarking report, 2016 Edition.