The Best of 2016: One of the Craziest Years In Recorded History!

 

A Month by Month Breakdown

 

  1. What a crazy year! A year that had a surprise around every corner. 

 

We started off with “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” breaking the North American box office record. Then in February, things were already looking a little weird when a lock of John Lennon‘s hair sold for $35,000 at an auction in Dallas, Texas. Then British Prime Minister David Cameron resigned after the BREXIT vote. This was followed by the Pokémon Go craze, and if all that wasn’t enough we got to experience one of the most historic presidential elections of all time.

 

Whew. What a crazy year! Thankfully we had all the incredible change articles to accompany us every step of the way. So here they are–a month by month breakdown of the best articles of 2016.

 

January

5 Make-or-Break Steps in the Agile Change Management Process

I began the year explaining what many software developers already understand – that change is inevitable and products evolve over time. I detailed why it is inefficient to have detailed goals and plans at the beginning of a project as opposed to using an agile change management approach. I elaborated on how developers can manage their time and resources more efficiently by learning to embrace change and use agile to minimize wasted time and effort.

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February

Where Change Management Fails

Knowing where others have failed, so as not to repeat their mistakes. This article is a great view on all the vital statistics and Do’s and Don’ts. Robert Half Management Resources place a great emphasis on the importance of early communication and managing expectations.

 

Leading in Times of Change: What Breed of Leader Are You?

The most critical aspect in times of change is leadership. A captain to steer the ship through the stormy waters. Now, this article by Rose Fass is by no means recent, however when I saw it,I knew that I had to include it. I took from the article one of my new favourite quotes: “Lead the Change Before the Change Leads You”.

 

March

21 Change Management Influencers You Absolutely Need to Follow on Twitter

Social media is taking over our lives; it is not only addictive it is also increasingly educational. The change management influencers I have chosen can teach you all you need to know about the trade from the easy access of your twitter page. They will help keep you up to date with the latest news and trends around the world and continue to inspire you to improve change management within your organizations: check them out today and see what else you can learn. Thanks twitter!

 

April

Culture Is Not the Culprit

A fascinating piece from The Harvard Business Review by Jay W. Lorsch and Emily McTague. Many of the difficulties we are faced with in Change Management are based on cultural differences; or so we assume. This brilliant piece refutes our basic understanding, that culture is the problem, and in its place argues that culture is in fact an outcome.  

 

The writers support their opinion quite beautifully by enlisting the views of various, successful business leaders such as Doug Baker the CEO of Ecolab, Richard Anderson, Delta’s CEO, Alan Mulally who heads up Ford and  Dan Vasella who in 1996, was named chief executive of Novartis – a company which eventually became the largest producer of pharmaceuticals in the world. Definitely one of the best of the year!

 

May

10 Ways NOT to Do Change Management

Alexandra Levit shows us that forcing Change can often do more bad than good. Similar to this infographic that she used to illustrate the fact that sometimes, we are trying to implement the right system in the wrong way.    

 

She gives us 10 wonderful lessons to learn, 10 ways not to do Change Management. The examples include trying to implement the change from the bottom up, instead of leading by example. Another great message to take from this article is that often management relies too heavily on logic and doesn’t place emphasis on the  “passion, fire, and story” of the change, to get the employees motivated to buy-in to the change.

 

To Win the Civil War, Lincoln Had to Change His Leadership

A great article by Vijay Govindarajan and  Hylke Faber in the Harvard Business Review on leadership. I decided to take a slightly different lesson out of the article: There are times when you need to adapt your leadership style in order to succeed. If you are struggling to implement a change in your company, it may very well be that your style of leadership is not suited to the task at hand. You may be too soft or too harsh on the employees, my advice would be to analyse how you are approaching the situation and then adapt yourself accordingly to how your shortcomings.

 

June

This Chart Shows Why So Many Change Management Efforts Fail

In this thought provoking article, leadership expert Mark Murphy discusses one of the most common, but least discussed issues facing change management initiatives in the workforce today. Murphy uses a Leadership IQ study to illustrate the fact that many change initiatives fail because organizations seldom preface those initiatives with an open discussion of the problems that necessitate said change.

 

Murphy urges leaders to shift toward openly discussing issues so that movements toward change won’t come as a shock to employees.  Murphy’s point is worth considering, and this piece is certainly worth reading.

 

The 7 Emojis of Change Management

Of the posts I published in 2016, this one was by far the most fun to write and most well-received. After hearing great feedback in the aftermath of our “5 reactions to organizational change demonstrated by cats,” I thought it would be fun to do something similar with emojis. Behold, here’s your guide to understanding the pains and jubilation’s of change management as conveyed in the most 21st century way possible.

 

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July

7 Questions to Ask Before Your Next Digital Transformation

“Estimates of digital transformation failures range from 66% to 84%.” When undergoing a digital restructure, know what to questions to raise in order to be part of the small percentage of transformations that succeed. These 7 questions are the starting point to beginning a digital transformation; I would most definitely recommend reading this if there is a potential transformation on the horizon.

 

Pokémon NO – Pokémon Go and Change Management terms which have been overused

What would a 2016 countdown be without one of the most entertaining trends of year- Pokémon Go!  I address the most overused trends in Change Management . After collecting insights by experts on LinkedIn, I came up with the following list of phrases change managers are tired of hearing.

 

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August

How to Introduce a New Feature to Change-Resistant Users

My colleague at WalkMe, EMILIA D’ANZICA, explains how to deal with Change-resistant users and the introduction of new features. She leaves no doubt as to the importance of catering to the individual user. But most of all, why it is critical to “Develop an onboarding strategy that allows customers to take on changes and updates at their own pace, and provide them with the necessary support to do so.”

 

September

How to Navigate Organizational Change without Destroying Your Company’s Soul

We all know by now that naturally, people don’t react very well to change, and experience problems in embracing it. This put a heavy weight on the shoulders of the organization’s leaders, who face the challenge of keeping the heart and soul of the company.

 

In this article, Angelina Zimmerman explores organizational change and employee’s reactions to it through the eyes of globalization, which put the focus on new technology, innovation, and exceeding customer and shareholder expectations.

 

 

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Employee Engagement Isn’t a Sprint; It’s a Marathon

Mila D’antonio gives us the scoop on the importance of preparing for long-term changes. Mixed into her article are some profound and thought provoking ideas, one that made me laugh out loud was:

“Training is like brushing your teeth. Just because you did it last week, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it this week.”

 

October

New Managers Aren’t Getting The Training They Need to Succeed

This infographic deals with an area that I do not recall blogging about, which is why when it was discussed by Randy Conley, it interested me so much. The Ken Blanchard Companies conducted a survey of 400 managers and came to the conclusion that New Managers Aren’t Getting The Training They Need to Succeed. This infographic shows us why they feel the way they do.

 

Rules of Engagement

“Chaotic and childish” Those were the initial thoughts that popped into my head when I saw this infographic by Tanmay Vora, but then I took a closer look.

“Brilliant.” “Genius.” “Creative.” Those are the thoughts you will most likely experience when you grasp the intricacies of the design of the infographic by this Top 5 Indian HR Influencer.

 

 

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November

NFL Success Driven by Organizational Change Management

Kelsey Allen draws on the similarities between football and organisational transformation. This is one of the most creative analogies that I have seen in a while and I think that what stands out is the way she seamlessly compares the players to employees. An example is when she says “notice that some team members aren’t paying attention to the correct calls, plays and/or coaching while on and off the field.”

 

Hopefully, it should help you sidestep a tackle or two.  

 

 

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A Letter to the Incoming POTUS from A Change Manager

Let me stress from the outset that this is a completely apolitical post. I usually make an undue effort to avoid politics like the plague. However, with only a few short days until voting day, I thought I would share some advice with the candidates and give them some pointers on their way to the Oval office.

 

Christopher Smith
Chris is the Lead Author & Editor of Change Blog. Chris established the Change blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to Change Management.
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