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Change Management Process

        posted by , April 17, 2013

Organizational change isn't optional.

Change is an inevitable part of business. Organizations change their mission, strategy, structure, practices, processes, systems, knowledge and products on a regular basis in response to external pressures such as competition.

The following organizational change management process can be used to lead change. (organizational change management is a human resources or executive management function that differs from change management at the project or team level).

change management process

Establish Change Culture

Organizational change management is primarily focused on reducing barriers to change.

The difference between an organization that quickly innovates and an organization that fails to change can be summed up in one word — culture.

Improving your corporate culture is a critical strategy that reduces change barriers.

Establish Mission Communicate a compelling picture of your future to build energy around change.
Establish Principles Change management principles set expectations for your corporate culture. They embody critical change techniques such as the principle that leaders should communicate and address objections to change.
Lead Culture Shift Change depends on a corporate culture that's accepting of change.
Develop Change Leaders Change management doesn't succeed as a centralized top-down function. Establish a network of change leaders throughout your organization who lead your culture.
Establish Team Building Programs Support team building at every level of your organization. Going out for lunch with the people you already work with closely doesn't do much for the organization. Team building is most effective when it connects people at different levels and in different teams.
Develop Recognition Programs Establish a culture that keeps a pulse on achievements big and small. Recognition engages your employees in support of change.
Support Career Growth Set clear paths to career growth. Reward change agents with career opportunity and incentives. Develop training and mentoring programs.
Develop Innovation Programs How do good ideas at every level of your organization reach their commercial potential? Develop programs that facilitate bottom-up innovation.
Align Performance Management to Culture Ensure that your performance management practices reward those who lead successful change.
Align Objectives To Change Ensure that the objectives of your divisions, departments, teams, programs, projects and individuals are aligned to your culture.

Lead Change

Organizational change management supports change initiatives and change leaders.

Change is an integrated process that may involve changes to your organization's structure, culture, knowledge, processes, technology and products. Change is communicated, socialized and accepted. Training and development are essential to transitioning people to the new state.

Communicate Change It's difficult to over-communicate change. Changes that appear to be well communicated may still suffer from low visibility and unrealistic expectations. Change management teams set standards for change communication and monitor communication issues.
Socialize ChangePeople who feel consulted are less likely to resist change. Change management sets objectives for socialization of change and manages performance to those objectives.
Address ObjectionsPeople who have had an opportunity to voice objections are less likely to resist change. Establish a culture that requires change sponsors to socialize change and address objections to change.
Improve ChangeCommunication and socialization feed into change improvement. Actions to incorporate feedback into plans improve organizational agility and reduce resistance to change.
Provide TrainingEnsure that changes include sufficient training and development.
Support Change LeadersSupport change leaders who hit political roadblocks or who encounter challenges they are struggling with (e.g. stress).
Recognize Change LeadersRecognizing change leaders sends the message that change is valued.
Manage PerformanceReward agents of change and manage performance.
Manage Issues & Clear RoadblocksChange management may play a central role in major initiatives such as acquisitions & restructuring. For example, change management teams may work to clear roadblocks to change.
Celebrate Successes Celebrate successful change to reinforce your culture.


Change produces results such as new products, process improvement, quality improvement, risk reduction, compliance, mergers & acquisitions, revenue, strategy execution and sustainable competitive advantage.

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