Change management strategy, also known as strategic management, is a concept that involves the analysis of the central decisions and initiatives of the top managers of a company, whether those decisions and initiatives come directly from management or on behalf of the ownership. Since the management is responsible for the performance of the company and the resources it takes to achieve any of its goals, initializing a “change management” policy can be the first step on the road to a more successful company. It can start with simple activities such as defining the mission, objectives and overall vision of the company. Ultimately, though, the organization must devise and enact policies and programs to turn that vision into a reality, and allot the necessary resources to do so, if it is to be successful. This might only be possible if there are members of the team keeping careful score of the successes and failures of each initiative, and generally keeping tabs on whether management is keeping up their end of the bargain. It isn’t always easy, but it’s a necessary evil in order to achieve real organizational change at all levels of the company.
There are many steps that should be involved in the process when a company decides to enact this type of policy to achieve long-lasting organizational change. For many companies, hiring a change management consulting firm is the first step, because they have the expertise and knowledge to make sure the policy changes and new programs are initialized correctly based on the successes and failures they’ve witnessed in the past. In any case, the strategy and planning must be the first components of any successful change management strategy scheme.
If you’re going to initialize a successful change management policy in your company, the members of management will need to be realistic about the kind of strategy that will work, considering the unique specifications of the organization. This must be the kind of change that people will want to embrace, even if it means some difficult challenges during the transition. You can’t expect people to welcome changes with open arms just because they have to – that sort of strategy will only ensure lip service with little in the way of real organizational change. A successful strategy should focus on getting back to basics, and the policies and programs involved should be simple, with goals and purposes that, while not necessarily easy to enact, are at least easy to understand.
Making a Plan
No successful organizational change can take place without a plan, which starts with selecting the right leadership to make the changes happen with consideration of how workplaces are evolving and how people tend to behave individually and organizationally. The plan should have clearly defined objectives, milestones and checkpoints for success, and a theoretical framework to guide each step of the process. There should be room for reward, so members of the team are motivated to make the change happen because they want to, not just because they have to. The plan should also include assessments for risk that are checked and re-checked along the way.
Communication is Essential
Any good change management consulting expert will tell you that communication is the key to a successful organizational change. The mission, objectives and overall vision of the change plan should be clear to members of the team at all levels. This means that top managers must be very clear on the goals, strategies, programs and policies involved in the change plan, and able to communicate them effectively. Communication must be frequent, and it must be authentic, to make sure that any necessary organizational change is a success.
Connect with me on
Geoffrey Lewis is a Vice President and the leader of Paragon’s Corporate & Enterprise consulting practice for Life Sciences. In this role, Geoff builds and retains relationships with client executives, and acts as a key advisor to those executives, project sponsors and key decision makers. Geoff’s career spans over 20 years of experience developing and operationalizing strategies, increasing revenues, and improving operational efficiencies for Fortune 500 organizations across diverse industries. Geoff holds a Graduate Certificate in Business Management from the Macquarie Graduate School of Management, Sydney, Australia.