Change management in 2012 – an update 2014

What is different about managing change in organisations in 2012?

  1. Budgets are incredibly tight so it even more important than ever to make change management work first time to keep costs to a minimum.  You might only get one bite at the cherry.  {Has much changed?}
  2. Job insecurity is high so managers need to be especially realistic about what staff have to say about changes when they are consulted.  You might find that you are constantly being told what you want to hear.  {Not much difference in 2014.}
  3. Many old business models are out of date so making changes effectively to business strategies is a real survival issue for many organisations.  If you keep on doing what you have always done you are just going to get the same results.
  4. Social media channels are rapidly changing the way that people communicate both at work and at home so managers need to ask themselves how they can harness the power of these channels to make changes to strategies, products, services and internal processes.
  5. Growth is flat for many companies so managers need to be very tuned in to the external environment to identify exactly which changes are going to be the most beneficial.

The practical implications for managers therefore are:

  1. Only choose changes that make a difference to customers and avoid anything that doesn’t add value from a customer standpoint.  This means that cost cutting needs to be examined closely to ensure that it does not damage customer relationships.
  2. Really work hard to create an environment where it is safe for staff to say what they believe and feel about proposed changes.  Job uncertainties increase the likelihood of them telling managers what they want to hear.
  3. Plan change carefully to ensure that it is cost effective because you may only get one chance at making the change.
  4. Be very careful about assessing the power issue in the current economic climate particularly customer power.

{Much of this article I blogged in 2012 still appears to hold true.}

I raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society in the UK – a very small donation at http://www.virginmoneygiving.com/everyonedeservesgoodmanagement would be most appreciated.

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