Is Your Change Management Methodology Right?

Ok, when asked to approach the art of determining if a change management methodology is right for a given situation, I raised an eyebrow. Even as I write this one, I don’t really want to, because there are no constant factors I can actually go on to guide you with this.

All I can do for helping you determine if you’ve picked an appropriate change management methodology is cover some basic conditions with which change management must contend, and point out if your model properly addresses these in your situation.

This is, however, going to be a gross set of extreme generalizations, because I have no logical way of knowing the nature of the organization you must change, who the people are, what the change is, or what your mandatory agenda and schedule might be.

This can get you thinking, but that train of thought can be prevalent as you look at different models available, and weigh the conditions of your environment in conjunction with conventional obstacles and metrics that are ubiquitous to change management. Boy that sentence sounded pretentious.

So, the first thing to consider is, how receptive to change are the people you must directly affect for change implementation? You’ll need to know this before looking at this, and how you find that out is to get to know these people before you start planning your strategy or schedule.

The more receptive to change they are, the less of an emphasis on unfreezing and refreezing you need. Receptive, or higher percentage of receptive versus frozen people means that something a bit less focused on that, like the Kotter model works fine.

Those needing more freeze ablation need to take more example from the ancient and foundational Lewin model.

But, there’s more to your methodology than just your type or model of change, including your managerial approaches. What kind of people, again, are you working with? Is the atmosphere of the organization vibrant and somewhat informal within tolerable boundaries? Then you need to be a wise friend who doesn’t strive to be judgmental overtly.

If you’re working with a drier, more formal atmosphere, then a strong sense of authority and finality needs to be conveyed by how you present yourself and interact with these people.

Along with this, your training, which is the step of implementing new ideas with the people, is also something to take a look at. Most people will respond poorly to the classroom, so depending on the types of people, a well-rounded gamified model of training might work, or a flipped classroom model might work for older adults who are used to conferencing, debating and confabbing.

Finally, your scheduling approach and metric standards depend on the kind of time windows you have to work with. This depends on the scale of change, the nature of the organization and the speed and stress levels the affected people can and will tolerate without severe negative results coming out of it.

So, like I said, this is a set of generalities, but with this, you might just be able to determine if your change management methodology is right for your needs, and your ideology.

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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