Hints and Tips

Change Management Tips

Create a personal culture that is receptive to change

• Do some everyday things differently – travel to work by a different route, read a book on a different topic, wear a different colour.

• Do things slightly outside your comfort zone – write a letter to the editor, organise a sports event, throw a dinner party.

• Maintain a list of personal goals (big and small) in different aspects of your life.

Create a work culture that is receptive to change

• Switch staff between roles to avoid them becoming stale. • Actively seek suggestions from staff for better ways of doing things.

• Reward effective suggestions and excellent work. Studies show that ad hoc, occasional rewards (cinema tickets / flowers) are more effective than predictable, expected rewards – even thought the latter may be larger.

• Sincere praise in front of peers costs nothing and is highly valued.

• Delegate - give staff the opportunity to implement their suggestions, if appropriate.

Communicate!

• Hold weekly staff meetings and give everyone an opportunity to contribute.

• Circulate a monthly or bi-monthly newsletter to keep staff informed of current activities / new projects etc.

• Keep people fully informed about their jobs. Explain not just what you want them to do, but why – and the contribution their role makes to the overall success of the organisation.

• Communicate a professional message by setting a high standard through your own work habits and manner of dealing with people.

• Make time to move around the office and talk to the team – don’t be tied to your desk.

• Be open to communications in both directions. Develop active listening skills to pick up the unspoken messages, as well as the spoken words.

Some technical change management skills

• Employ a range of thinking skills to identify potential changes and opportunities to add value. Use techniques such as Lateral Thinking, Mind Maps, Brain Storming and Six Thinking Hats.

• Use cost / benefit analysis techniques to calculate the financial impact of change. Calculate the Payback Period. Calculate the Return on Investment.

• Set clear goals. How will the success of the change be measured? When will the change be completed? What will it cost?

• Take time out to plan. The planning phase of any activity should take around 25% of the total activity time – yet many people bypass this phase completely. Fail to plan = plan to fail (see Managing Successful Projects).

• If the activity is at all complex (involving several people, lots of $ and several functions) consider using project management software to create the project plan and manage the implementation (see Microsoft Project).

• Perform a risk analysis. Ask yourself what could go wrong (be seriously pessimistic here!) and develop preventative and contingency plans for the most serious risks.

• Identify the key stakeholders in the change (the people most affected by it – especially those in a position to either ‘make it work’ or prevent it from happening). Prepare a Stakeholder Engagement Plan, identifying how you can best win the support of each group of stakeholders.

• Develop a Benefits Realisation Plan to ensure that the anticipated benefits of the project are actually achieved.

NDA’s Managing Change course presents all these techniques. The course is presented in a workshop format that gives practical guidance in planning for change in your organisation.


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