Leading Change Workbook


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A change primer

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Leading Change Workbook

  1. 1. Leading Change Chris THOMPSON www.peoplestrat.com December 2009
  2. 2. Foundations of Leading Change 1 FOUNDATIONS OF LEADING CHANGE INTRODUCTION Change is a constant. The paradox is evident – and true. Our ability not only to cope with it, but to lead and master it, determines our ability to run our lives and our organisations successfully. Change is about learning. Learning to adapt is great – but insufficient in that in adapting, we only react to change. Leading change means that we initiate change, that we are in the driving seat: we choose to change. Figure 1 shows the life cycle of a product, an organisation or system, or some other way of doing things. Figure 1: The Sigmoid or “S” Curve Natural Change Point Decline Acceptance & Normalization Slow Adoption Opportunities exist when we change before we have to. Change – deep change – means that we move from one curve to another. A Unnatural Change B Point Major opportunities exist when Individuals, systems, and organisations change before they have to change! Figure 2: Changing Curves The goal of this workbook is to help you execute the changes you initiate and the ones you are charged with implementing. Enjoy! Chris Thompson Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  3. 3. Making Change Work 2 MAKING CHANGE WORK RESISTANCE The first word that comes to mind when we talk about change in an organisational or managerial context is resistance. Why do people resist change so much? DISCIPLINE OF THE 2ND Making the move from the 1st to the 2nd curve appears illogical, not instinctive CURVE  Confusion, tension, and loss accompany the move  Successful life is a sequence of moves from curve to curve at A and before B  Assume you’ve already reached A  Need leaders the most at A 2 KINDS OF CHANGE Would you go through the hassle of learning a new way of doing things  when you could be losing status or power?  when you need to learn new things and there’s no guarantee that you will learn them sufficiently well to continue to occupy a place in the “new world”?  when someone else will be calling the shots and making the decisions that you made previously?  when there’s no guarantee that the new system will work any better than the old one anyway? OVERCOMING So essentially, if our change efforts are to be successful, we need to be able to RESISTANCE overcome resistance  by making inaction less palatable than action;  by making the future state more attractive than the present, despite the effort required to execute the change and the uncertainty of success;  by providing a minimum of security and visibility by communicating a smart change plan to get to the desired future state. FORMULA FOR CHANGE We can summarise this by saying that we overcome resistance when D x V x CP > R Where: D = dissatisfaction with the current state; V = vision of the future; CP = change plan of how we are going to get to the desired future state; R = resistance. PRINCIPLES OF For people to embrace change, we have a number to things to keep in mind: SUCCESSFUL CHANGE  People don’t resist what they have created themselves. How much can we LEADERSHIP involve different stakeholders in the change process?  As Peter Senge pointed out in the Fifth Discipline, “half an elephant is not an elephant”… An obscure way of saying that when, in an effort to simplify our task, we look at a part of the system and effect changes on it, we will be affecting the whole system. Systems thinking is critical in leading change.  Making changes can insult the past. People invested a lot of themselves in what you are changing. Give them their dues.  Never lose sight of the end result you seek. Your choices need to be guided by what you want to achieve. Make sure you define your end result clearly enough to ensure the domino theory doesn’t ruin your plan. Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  4. 4. Your Change Challenge 3 YOUR CHANGE CHALLENGE INTRODUCING  What is the change you must lead? YOUR CASE  What are the goals or outcomes of the change?  What are the major challenges you face in making it happen?  What would the impact be if handled poorly?  Where are you strong in terms of D-V-L-CP? Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  5. 5. Leading Change Methodology 4 LEADING CHANGE METHODOLOGY PREREQUISITES Any methodology for leading change needs to:  Analyse the current situation so as to generate dissatisfaction;  Describe a future state that is more attractive;  Detail a change plan which gives stakeholders visibility and the change initiator credibility;  Provide coaching and support to people affected by the change.  Generate energy around the change. METHODOLOGY  Build and communicate Case for Change.  Create an engaging vision of the future.  Create the change plan.  Help people make the transition.  Generate energy around the change. And of course, the role of the leader in all this is critical. Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  6. 6. Building the Case for Change 5 BUILDING THE CASE FOR CHANGE FORCE FIELD What are the compelling reasons for this change? What is the source of your information that tells you we must change and change now? What is compelling us ANALYSIS to stay the way we are? These are all questions we need to answer. In building the case for change, we are really looking at why we are dissatisfied with the current setup. So just where are the issues?  The market?  Operations?  Competition?  Finance?  Customer satisfaction?  Productivity?  Employee satisfaction?  Efficiency?  Cost-effectiveness? THE CASE FOR CHANGE Giving the information is not enough: it needs to be credible. And even if it is credible, it still needs to generate some urgency. We all know that cars generate greenhouse gases but that does not stop us using them because using my car today will not make the air unbreathable tomorrow. Smoking today does not give me lung cancer tomorrow. So how do we generate that urgency? Do the data support our case? Do we know the scope of the problem? THE CASE AGAINST Rare are the situations where change really seems to be the only conceivable CHANGE solution. What are the issues that will obstruct our efforts to change? What are the arguments that nullify our case for change? And how can we reduce or cancel their impact? Force Field Analysis is one way. List in the following table the Driving and Restraining forces that will affect your efforts in a change that you are currently leading or implementing. The name of the game is to maximize the driving forces and minimise the restraining forces. How are you going to do that? Possible Forces:  What are the short- & long-term threats?  What impact will not changing have on our customer? Profitability? Competitive advantage?  What personal impact will not changing have on you and your people (job loss, development opportunities lost, career limitations, financial loss)?  What will happen in 3 years if we keep doing what we are doing? Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  7. 7. Building the Case for Change 6 BUILDING THE Use the tools below in the space provided: CASE FOR  Business as Usual. If we keep doing the same things, what can we expect CHANGE: OTHER short-, mid-, long-term? IDEAS  Competitor’s Heaven. What would our competitors like us to continue doing? YOUR ELEVATOR After you have determined reasons to change, answer these questions: SPEECH  What are the most compelling reasons to change? Dissatisfactions, lost opportunities, threats, fears?  What are the risks of not changing? Costs, morale, inefficiency, speed, quality, etc.  Why is it important right NOW? Context, situation, opportunities  Why do you care? Explain why you personally care about this change  Why do you need others help? Explain why others are important or critical to achieving the change. Create & present your elevator speech., one that passes the killer questions test… Why? How do you know that? Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  8. 8. Creating the Change Plan 7 CREATING THE CHANGE PLAN INTRODUCTION Creating the change plan in many companies is limited to detailing implementation phases in much the way a new air-conditioning unit would be installed. The kind of change we are looking at requires a holistic approach – systems thinking. In creating our change plan to the future, we will address the following:  Involving stakeholders. Who are the stakeholders? At what stage should they be involved? What is their position as regard the change?  Getting the management team behind the change. Is everyone on the team in favour of the change? If not, why are they against it? Are their other agendas out there?  Alignment of systems, process and people. Are there systems in our organisation which are incompatible with the result that we are trying to achieve? Is the structure the right one? Do our people have the necessary competencies to function effectively in our new world?  Communication. What is our plan? Who do we communicate to and when? Is our messaging appropriate and credible? Or will we be regarded as corporate spin doctors? Do we have the facts to back up our claims? Have we thought through all aspects of the issues? INVOLVING Our first task is to identify and qualify stakeholders. This means answering the following questions: STAKEHOLDERS  Who will be affected by the changes? Who will gain/lose in the change?  Whose support do we need and how can we connect with them?  What level of involvement for each category of stakeholder to guarantee success?  What do I need to do to get their involvement? When we talk of involving people in change, we tend to concentrate on the core teams, or design or implementation teams. True, these are good ways to involve people during the change. We are most interested in how that involvement will work positively for us when the change has been implemented, that is, in the full production phase. ROLES What do you want stakeholders to do? Here is a list of the roles together with a short description: Make. These are the people who are most impacted by the change because they are the ones whose roles change most. Support. Not directly affected, but are sufficiently close to the action to see what is going on and can in fact facilitate the process and support and help others more severely impacted. Neutral. Don’t obstruct the change. Passive Resistance. Covertly against the change. Would do nothing to help, even if it was sinking. Against. Openly against the change.  Given each stakeholder’s level of support, what must you do to create the necessary level of buy-in/support from key partners & stakeholders? Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  9. 9. Creating the Change Plan 8 SYSTEMS What are the key processes, structures and people systems that must be in place to ensure the success of your change? ANALYSIS What is top priority and what is needed to make the changes? Add these to your change plan. LEADERSHIP PLAN  Who is on your team?  Is your team aligned? • Shared understanding of the reasons and the vision for this change? • Common elevator speech? • How committed to the vision? • Clear roles for each member?  How will you maintain alignment?  What are the top 3 critical factors of your leadership plan. COMMUNICATION  Audience: Who needs to be aligned on the vision and change plans? PLAN  Messages: What are the messages that need to get communicated repeatedly – same or different messages for different audiences?  Timing: How do we share the message – 1:1, 1:many, 1:team, …?  Method: How do we encourage 2-way communication and build commitment through communication?  Timing: When do we need to start/finish?  Goals: How will you measure success? Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  10. 10. Managing People Through Transitions 9 MANAGING PEOPLE THROUGH TRANSITIONS Endings  List what is ending as a result of this change. What are you leaving behind?  Determine how you can honour the endings and losses.  List what is NOT ending or changing? Transition  What ways can you normalise the uncertainty of the transition period?  What ways can you organise the transition into manageable, understandable, time-limited phases so people can experience the group as making progress?  How can you use the creativity and learning of the transition period?  What transition tools can help your organisation move through the transition period? Beginnings  Are you constantly communicating what the beginning looks like?  How can you ensure some quick successes?  How can you symbolise the new identity or new beginning? Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009
  11. 11. Sustaining Momentum 10 SUSTAINING MOMENTUM List ways in which your organisation will create sustainable change. Celebrating Successes Metrics & Measures Integrating the Learning Managing Meaning Leading Change – © Chris THOMPSON 2009