Why A Change Management Strategy Template Is Necessary For Effective Change

Understanding the Important of a Change Management Strategy Template

A one-off change is not an effective approach when you want to bring about a change in the operations of an organization. It seems easier when said than done to bring about instant changes to a business organization. A changing period, commonly known as transition period will be required to as to give room for a consistent and effective change.

Consider the following situations:

  • Reassigning offices to a news subgroup from the main business organization located in the same building
  • Releasing a new commodity into the market
  • Buying a new company that is almost the size of your company

All these activities are changes taking place within an organization. They require an effective change management strategy template for them to be effective and work out exactly as you want them to. Each of these changes has got impact on the people working in the organization and how they carry out their jobs. These changes, depending on the impact on the staff, could suffer from low utilization rate or even slow adoption by the staff. The staff may resist the change or not want to engage with it at all, a feature that will force the change to face many risks.

One common thing is that all changes will require effective and reliable change management strategy for them to be successful. However, you will need to note that different changes will differ on the change approach and the right amount of change required making the specific change fruitful. The change management strategy template therefore comes up with the approach that should be followed on every situation so as to make the initiative or project a success.

Elements of Change Management Strategy

Change management strategy revolves around three main elements namely:

a) Situational awareness

b) Supporting structure

c) Strategy analysis

1. Situational Awareness

Situational awareness is all about understanding the kind of change that you are dealing with. Here you deal with the following:

Change Characteristics

You should begin by understanding the change that you want to introduce. A change can be in the form of a strategic initiative, formalized projects or even small adjustments in the operations of the organization. To understand these changes, you will have to answer question such as: what is the extent of the impact of the change on the people? What is the change intended to do? How many people will be affected by the change? Will it impact evenly on all the people or will it have more impact on some people? What exactly will be changed- systems, processes, job roles? What time frame do you have to administer the changes?

Organizational Attributes

This includes the people or groups of people on whom the change will have impact on. Organization attributes refers to the culture or better, the history against which the change is being introduced. Try to find out how past changes were managed. Find out if there is any need to have this change implemented. You should be able to link the change and the organization’s vision to ensure you don’t drive the company off the tracks.

Impacted Groups

This is the last step in situation awareness. It involves creating a map of the staff o whom the change will impact on and how each of them will be affected. Each change will impact on different groups of people in different ways. This map will help customization of specification of changes later in the management process.

2. Supporting Structure

This refers to all the necessary infrastructures needed to facilitate effective and efficient changes. A change will always be accompanied by the relevant resources that will see to it that its implementation is fruitful. Support structure will include the following:

Team Structure

The change management strategy template team structure defines who is supposed to oversee the change management work. It defines the working relationship between the change management team and the project team. There are two most common team structures:

1) Where change management is assigned to a project team member

2) Where there is an external management team that is in charge of the change.

One factor to consider is that you should make an informed decision when assigning a team the change management task so as to assign it to a person who can see the change become a reality.

Sponsor Coalition

This sponsor coalition defines the people, often managers and leaders, who should oversee the successful implementation of the change. This includes the primary sponsor, who is usually the person who coined the idea of change and funded the change process. It also includes the various leaders in the groups being affected by the change. The change characteristics can as well determine who else needs to join the coalition depending on the requirements needed. The sponsor coalition members are charged with the responsibilities of communicating and advocating for the change among the coalition and organization.

3. Strategy Analysis

Here, you try to figure out all the barriers that would hinder successful implementation of the change. Here we look at:

Risk Assessment

This involves the risk that there will be problems managing and executing the change on the side of the staff. This is more likely to be as a result of dramatic changes and those others that are far reaching within the company. Such changes will have higher chances of failure. This is similar in organizations where there exists a culture and history of changes being resisted.

Anticipated Resistance

At times, when a change is being introduced, the change management team knows where and from who to expect resistance. The change will be received differently by the people and while some will comply with the change, others will look forward to its failure. It is therefore of utmost importance to have a clue on how the staff will receive the change. This will help you prepare on how to handle the resistance as well as try out new approaches.

Special Tactics

This is the last step in the change management strategy template. It involves identifying and developing some special tactics that will be used to ensure that the change is successfully implemented. At times the changes may require you to develop these special tactics to solve the complicated issues affecting the change. Special tactics are useful in the cases that the implementation process has stalled or failed. They may be in form of changing a part of the implementing process, or a small bending of this process so as to accommodate the problematic issue.

Change management strategy template is therefore a sensitive process that requires a lot of devotion and handwork. It involves self sacrifice to ensure a change is successfully implemented. When undertaking this process, one need to ensure all the factors that would affect the change’s implementation are looked into and adjustments made to accommodate any problematic issues. Moreover, one will too need to convince those to be impacted upon by the change that it is needed and for the benefit of the whole organization.

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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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