Successful Change Management: Key Elements for Success

Change management is an essential part of any organization's success. It involves clarifying roles and responsibilities, streamlining processes, centralizing services, and using automation to generate cost savings and improve employee engagement. Security leadership and experience are also necessary to identify risks, develop remediation plans, compare safety maturity, measure improvement, interpret regulatory requirements, and create compliance programs. The success of change depends on the active and visible participation of leadership at all levels of the organization.

When leaders understand their role and how they can support change, their commitment and support for the program increases. Designing a stakeholder engagement plan that is interactive, adaptable, and data-driven will provide an appropriate structure at every level, starting with leadership. This plan should also raise awareness, provide and set expectations, and promote transparency. Stakeholders include all those affected by the change.

Including end-user stakeholders from initial planning to implementation will ensure that the right tools and business processes are designed and developed, resulting in a better employee experience and greater adoption of change. Communication forms the backbone of a unified project team by generating enthusiasm and awareness among employees and helping to eliminate organizational silos. Messages must be relevant, adapted to different groups, timely, consistent, visible, and generate enthusiasm. They must also have leadership support.

To develop a communication strategy, you'll need to identify the audiences affected, the communication channels you can take advantage of, the communication objectives, and the governance structure for approving messages. Consider different multimedia options and creative ways to connect with your organization outside of email. Leverage blogs, intranet sites, and social apps to start conversations, share knowledge, and create a community. There are a multitude of collaboration tools available such as Microsoft Teams, SharePoint, Slack, and intranet sites. Providing these capabilities to employees promotes empowerment and participation throughout the program.

Setting the right metrics allows you to communicate, train, and direct the behaviors that will drive desired business results. Organizations should summarize all the hard work to implement change initiatives by ensuring that employees receive appropriate training, have access to self-service resources, understand what is expected of them, and have the support they need. Your change management plan should include post-implementation evaluations to assess behavioral changes, system effectiveness after 30 days (and more), identify trends and gaps. The areas of an organization most affected by transformation are mentality, behavior, culture, strategy, design, and tactics. Mindset affects behavior which creates a culture that succeeds or fails to implement a solid strategy with the tactics needed to execute it. Leadership must have authentic faith in the mission for successful organizational change. When it comes to transformation within an organization it's all or nothing.

Even if initial momentum is gained there will almost always be a setback without aligned leadership participation and communication. Effective strategic marketing leaders realize that change is part of continuous improvement process. Successful change management programs encourage and facilitate the adoption of new ideas processes or management models. Guided by these principles your change initiative will generate more impactful and sustainable results setting a good precedent for future changes in the organization. John Kotter's eight-step change process presented in his book in 1995 is one way to measure progress of change using key performance indicators (KPIs) contained in the change management plan. Organizations measure change management activities based on baseline project cost schedule results. Throughout the change process gather feedback from stakeholders allowing open communication to mitigate resistance to change.

Glenn Llopis author of Leadership in the Age of Personalization mentions most organizations do not achieve lasting success with managing change due to internal politics. Being able to mobilize individual change necessary for an initiative to be successful adding value to the organization is the essence of change management. A continuous improvement plan uses stakeholder feedback evaluations user behavior to improve process.

Madeline Credille
Madeline Credille

Friendly pop culture evangelist. Devoted internet junkie. Professional travel expert. Passionate web ninja. Subtly charming coffee geek. Typical twitter fan.

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