If you’re looking to start a new career, you’ll want to select a field that’s on an upward trend. Because organizations are in a constant state of change, this has created a viable opportunity to become a change manager.
The delivery of change doesn’t directly generate revenue, but it is crucial for transforming processes on route to increased productivity. Change must be planned to be executed effectively, which is why change managers have become more important.
The job pays well, offering variety across multiple projects. Knowing you’ve played a crucial role transforming change processes offers a great sense of achievement, especially when you manage to convert change resisters to change champions.
If you’re fortunate enough to land one of many change management jobs available, you’ll soon realize half the battle is getting people to accept change. People are often stuck in their ways, and perceive change as threatening to their job security. It may be a difficult job, but it’s certainly rewarding.
How Can You Get Into Change Management?
Change management jobs are slightly unconventional. It’s not your typical line of work with structured duties, rather a flexible discipline that requires creativity. Change management comes with its own unique skill set, which is difficult to quantify.
There are two core competencies to consider:
- Stakeholder management
- Your ability to deal with ambiguity
These terms are open to interpretation, so your approach to the profession is dependent on your discretion in any given scenario. What’s certain is you’ll need to be a strong personality who can make decisions quickly, with reference to what’s ahead. Though there’ll be objectives to meet, these are rarely set in stone. That means you have to set an example as someone whose readily adaptable to change, meaning staff can follow your example when you introduce change.
The Need for Practical Experience
Though you can obtain certificates for change management, your business acumen will be shaped by practical experience. This is common with all project management roles, where a qualification on its own simply won’t suffice.
Anyone can learn the process, but it takes a special type of individual to perform well in change management jobs. Your qualification won’t help you secure staff buy in or resources, nor will it help you gain the respect of stakeholders.
With this being said, it’s evident change is more of a mentality than anything else. It should almost be addressed from a psychological/behavioral stance, because you’ll constantly work on changing mentalities. Communication skills are learned in the real world, and meaningful interactions will drive successful change management. Some companies resort to throwing prospective change managers in at the deep end so they can learn on the job. The practical experience obtained is character building, and will help you become proactive.
Why Change Management?
Change occurs on an almost daily basis, in alignment with a constantly evolving digital landscape. Organizations need to be responsive, evolving processes to ensure positive growth. The sheer volume of change to plan and execute provides an opportunity to get involved in various areas. One second you might be working on a IT transformation, and next thing you’re rolling out regulatory change. Because it’s such a diverse field, you’ll never get bored, especially if you immerse yourself in your daily duties.
Though most jobs advance knowledge over time, change management is in another league. You’ll be adapting to new technology and regulatory change, while discovering various opportunities in various areas. Because you’re constantly promoting a continuous development philosophy, you too will develop. There are multiple skills to learn, and you’ll sharpen your tools considerably over time.
Your job role will deliver real value, through daily duties that directly influence business strategy. You’ll have a real sense of purpose, as you define ways of working that contribute to organizational success. Delivering work that makes a real difference is exciting, and if you help improve a company’s bottom line, your salary should reflect this.
Change management will define your role as a leader. If you didn’t think you were a natural leader prior to entering the profession, you’ll soon be forced to become one. You’ll be centered as a main point of contact for stakeholders, while communicating clear actions and visions. Motivated by meeting critical business objectives, your leadership capabilities will sharpen quickly.
Change management jobs offer a whole new perspective on how business operates. If you thought you knew how businesses function prior to entering the field, you’ll soon realize the reality is different. You’ll gain broad knowledge on how organizations operate, invaluable as you progress through different business environments.
If you’re interested in landing a career in change management, now is the best time to act!
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.