What is the best Change model for managing organisational change?

Just like there are many project management models,  PRINCE2, PMBOK, AGILE, there are also many change management models.  Some of the most popular are Kotter, Prosci, and the S.C.A.R.F model. All have their place and many change managers will appreciate different aspects from all of them. But we are here to have a think about which model is best for your organisation - so how do you choose?

So which model is the best to use and when?

All of the models have their merits. And all have tools and techniques that can be applied in various situations. A.D.K.A.R for example in the Prosci model,  has easy to understand principles regarding the phases of change to step the individuals through. It assists any individuals and organisations to understand some of the language and process of change.

Prosci then builds on ADKAR but takes it to another level. It aligns phases similar to project management. It is quite analytical in nature and this can often difficult to...

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What is the difference between Change communications and every day communications?

There is a big difference between standard organisational communications to employees and information based communications to customers, and change communications. Without understanding the difference, your change may fall flat, if the only way you communicate is through the standard communications channels and using the same methods as business as usual communications.  Think for a moment about the rise of social media, storytelling, music and engaging clips vs a standard newsletter email in your inbox. The two are chalk and cheese. One is informative, the other is engaging. And the interactive approach that social media has introduced, has made it harder for internal communications teams and change comms delivery people to get cut through.

With organisations constantly undergoing change, there seems to be a need for the worlds to meet a little more, with enhancements in the internal communications methods being used, with many internal communications managers and team members...

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The impact of poorly managed people change

So you have decided a restructure and leadership has determined that a change in operating model is necessary. Not only that, but all changes are needing to be delivered in a short time frame. In Australia there are clear guidelines as to workers rights, and if you are a human resources practitioner, you are well versed in these. But it takes time to mobilise and often people leaders aren't aware of the processes or protocols required, and then nervousness and fear sets in as leaders who need to implement these begin to realise the gravity of such changes on an individual level. It becomes poorly handled, through lack of communication, no sign of leadership conviction in the changes and outright confusion reigns as new roles are created without any accompanying clarity. Somehow the new structures are formed through sheer force, but what is the result and the ultimate people impacts?

Well here are some of them, and some of the most important reasons to have a change plan associated...

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What makes change complex and how to reduce it

It's a commonly used term, 'complexity'. In most organisations, it's how the stakeholders will describe the change or their organisation. Now I am not going to dismiss that off hand but let's go through what will make a change complex, and keeping in mind that we should define complexity as high risk. The more complex the higher risk there is that the change just won't stick!

Here are some scenarios where the change may be complex and more importantly what to do to reduce the complexity:

1. There are multiple streams of work taking place which haven't been aligned or streamlined into a cohesive story. The aspect that creates complexity here is a lack of understanding about the program itself. This generates confusion which for many is a safe place to land when they feel overwhelmed. If you want to reduce the complexity, unpack the streams to understand the relationship and dependencies so then it can be 'rebuilt' into a cohesive program. 

2. Geographic distance: The...

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5 ways to use Artificial intelligence in Change Management

Artificial Intelligence (AI) - everyone is talking about it. I recently recorded an Episode in Next Level Success covering this very topic, providing ways in which you can leverage AI. But let's bridge the gap between talking about it conceptually and how it can be used in a practical sense.  And the first major insight is that the more you use it, the more you will work on asking quality questions. The better the questions you ask, the better the output. The second main consideration is that the combination of your input and the AI generated output will always mean you will end up with better information.

Also I will allay your fears which may have been created by watching War Games, Terminator or the Matrix (does that age me?), the machines will not replace us! We are simply challenged to advance ourselves in line with the technology available to us. Let's face it, if my parents can text, Facetime and use What's app, then anyone can at least have a play with ChatGPT

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How a psychologically safe environment can facilitate change

It's quite the catch phrase and now more than ever talked about - psychological safety. But what is psychological safety all about and why is it needed to be able to facilitate change? Psychological safety, as defined by Harvard Business School professor Amy Edmondson, refers to "a shared belief held by members of a team that the team is safe for interpersonal risk-taking." Let's explore it further and the link between psychological safety and the ability to embrace change in an organisation, drawing insights from Amy Edmondson and other experts in the field.

Understanding Psychological Safety

Psychological safety forms the foundation for effective teamwork, collaboration, and innovation. It creates an environment where individuals feel comfortable taking risks, sharing ideas, and expressing their concerns without fear of negative consequences. Amy Edmondson's extensive research has highlighted the importance of psychological safety in fostering a culture of learning and...

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Recruiting the right people for your change

There are so many elements to consider when recruiting your change team. We have written about the resourcing models and the things to consider when looking at resourcing your change team but what about the recruitment process. You can go through the motions, advertise, interview, appoint. And the more you do it maybe the better you will get at it. After all that has some sense of legitimacy in its approach, after all practice makes perfect doesn't it? Well I am here to tell you that practice in fact doesn't make perfect. In fact repetition alone will not guarantee success, and when you are recruiting for a major transformation you need a strategy to make it work.

So here are the key tips to consider

1. Be clear on the role your team plays in the organisation: There is a difference between recruiting for a team who is a 'Centre of Excellence' and focuses on coaching ways of working as opposed to a team who is supporting delivery. And then there is the hybrid approach which does...

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How 'teaming' can help change teams thrive

As organisations face efficiency and profit challenges, there are more demands being placed on teams. Of course technology plays a big part in efficient delivery of products and services by teams, and this has seen the evolution of agile ways of working. However when looking to introduce change, efficiency takes a different meaning. It is more about the effectiveness of the individuals coming together to work on delivering it. How can they be more efficient and what can they do to become a high performing team? This is where the concept of 'teaming' comes into it. In agile frameworks the result of good teaming is improved velocity, in change it is achieving the outcomes you desired in a shorter period of time. But what does this concept of 'teaming' actually involve? And how does it contribute to creating high-performing teams?

What is Teaming?

Teaming is not just about grouping people together and hoping for the best. It's a dynamic process where individuals come together, often...

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Strategies to manage complex change

Complex change normally takes the form of large IT transformations or changes to the strategic direction and identity of an organisation. The complexity comes with multiple streams of work, all which bring change, are often all impacting the same group, at various degrees and at different times. Depending in the size and span of your organisation and impact on processes, the scale of change can result in a need to simplify the story of change so engagement from both leaders and frontline employees is high all the way through. 

The other aspect of a complexity measure is baed in the risk exposure for the organisation. In simple terms, it is a matter of answering the question 'how much can the organisation afford to have this program fail?' For transformations, the risk is higher than other changes due to level of investment and reputational risk - to possible shareholders and external stakeholders is high.

So what are some actions you should take when facing complex change?

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Which change model is right for your organisation? Part 2

In the previous post we explored some of the aspects of popular change models, but today in Part 2 we are going to take you through the questions you should ask BEFORE you start looking at your change model options. It could save you time, money and effort!

Unfortunately in many organisations, people jump to solutions too fast, attracted by the 'shiny,shiny' aspect rather than following a thought process where options are considered.

1) Are you clear on what problem you are trying to solve? 

This is one of my favourite questions by far. And I ask this often, when I am invited to meetings where a decision has been made yet there seems to be confusion about what the purpose of the new product, process or policy is. Be clear on what problem or problems you are looking to solve with the introduction of a change model. It could be increasing staff engagement, improving strategic decision making by better understanding impacts of changes being introduced, or achieving...

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