Change Management Plan
Prepared by Peter Lloyd Johnson
Marlboro College Graduate Center
August 7, 2010
Introduction & Current State:
The U.S. is growing more racially and ethnically diverse. White America is growing older while
the percentage of younger, mixed or “blended” ethnic groups continues to expand. Like other
states, Vermont shares in this racial and ethnic change; the world is getting smaller.
Founded in Brattleboro in 1993 and incorporated in 1995, The Vermont Partnership for Fairness
and Diversity is an education and advocacy resource dedicated to making communities fair and
welcoming for all. VPFD provides guidance to help communities overcome discrimination based
on prejudice and ignorance brought on by demographic change. It seeks to create citizen
leaders and train policymakers, educators, and business and community leaders.
The Need for Change - Root Causes:
The table below illustrates Vermont’s shifting demographics.
VT Population 1990 2000 2006
White 555,088 589,208 600,529
Non-white 11,331 25,123 30,023
% Non-white 2.0% 4.1% 4.8%
Demographic change is challenging for communities that have been largely homogeneous for
centuries. Individuals grow anxious when confronted by change. State government,
educational institutions and private industry all struggle to integrate groups of individuals who
are outside of Vermont’s historic demographic mix. Vermont’s first-hand experience with issues
of diversity, fairness and equality is limited.
Issues of fairness, diversity and equality are evident in all 13 Vermont counties, yet the Vermont
Partnership cannot execute its mission if constituents are unfamiliar with the organization.
VPFD’s reach is limited primarily to Windham county despite statewide need. Organizational
growth is stunted if the Vermont Partnership does not effectively communicate and market itself
to core constituents.
Execution of its core mission is a challenge for The Vermont Partnership due to its limited
communications reach. The Vermont Partnership urgently needs a vastly improved website to
push the organization’s message to a broader regional and statewide audience. Improved
search engine optimization, email marketing support and social marketing initiatives will all
contribute to extending the reach of the Vermont Partnership’s message. Moreover, these
initiatives will generate new financial resources that will further extend the organization’s
If successful, the results of this capstone will create and implement the necessary online
communication tools that will bring Vermont Partnership expertise to a broader constituency,
including the state legislature, educational and administrative leaders, communities of faith, and
private business owners.
Organizational View of this Problem:
The Executive Director and the organization’s board of directors have identified expanded
online communications and marketing as its top priority in 2010. VPFD’s current web presence
inadequately represents its core mission, the audience it serves and the results it produces.
The Vermont Partnership has looked to the Marlboro College Graduate Center to refresh its
website and extend its message using social media tools and email marketing. The Executive
Director of the Vermont Partnership and a member of the organization’s board of directors have
formed an online “sub-committee” to review/approve proposals set forth in the Capstone
Develop a website that promotes, expands and reinforces the Vermont Partnership brand.
Create a design that provides concise, clear and accurate information about the Vermont
A. Configure the site to allow representatives of the organization to handle on-going site
maintenance and content editing following site launch.
B. Design the site to be a civil rights resource for Vermont residents.
C. Develop a social networking presence and strategy that will engage the Vermont
Partnership community and augment the communications value of its website.
D. Develop an e-mail marketing strategy and template that will push the Vermont Partnership
message to municipal leaders, educators, educational administrators, and members of the
legislature, business leaders, and faith-based communities
Structural Change Management Plan
Formal Role to Play in Change Informal Role to Play in Change
Executive Director – Chief project Offers commentary re: creative
Curtiss Reed proponent; final approval of changes. and content direction; interpreter of
Financial resource, if necessary. important content.
VPFD board member – Idea generator Articulates what the VPFD site
Jimmy Karlan and advocate for usability and jargon-free must achieve; looks out for best
content. practices; discussion instigator.
Responsible for VPFD social media Young, tech-savvy individual who
interface (Facebook) – part-time has taken on initial social media
Copywriter –Site content development Astute resource for clearly
Cole Odell (limited); must work within keyword explaining VPFD’s mission in
parameters jargon-free language.
Art director – Site design and navigation Professional design communicates
recommendations. professional organization. Her
graphic design talent improves
Melissa Joomla web developer – responsible for Keystone to successful completion
Wetherby backend site development of this Capstone.
Name of Activity/Method Purpose during Change Logistical Information
Determine the need for new
content beyond existing
Initial mapping of existing Define the existing map; submit to
site; identify ongoing site
VPFD site using Mindmap subcommittee for comment
and SEO maintenance
Will serve as the basis for
Develop proposed site map usability testing. Proposed Define proposed may; test
based on stakeholder site map will also test for navigation and text using index
interviews jargon, which may inhibit card usability study.
Need to ensure that design
Home page design using Ensure Joomla compatibility with
is functional within Joomla
Joomla CMS. developer.
Keyword research and Identify language for text Share keyword search results
proposal development development which will with stakeholders. Explain
using Google keywords and present best chance for importance of writing content to
other online tools. optimizing search results keywords.
Insert proposed design template
Demonstrate potential e- and show analytics capabilities
Create organization buy-in
newsletter design and within MailBuild to VPFD
for shorter, timely email
functionality using Mailbuild stakeholders. Solicit email
initiatives. Track results.
application. addresses to begin building
Establish social media
Begin the process of Determine who will speak for
accounts for each of
interacting with fans. VPFD on Facebook. Determine
Develop ideas for posting whether set procedures for
LinkedIn and Flickr.
which best serve VPFD’s reviewing posts before going “live”
Provide branding tie-in to
mission. are necessary.
each site when available.
Human Resources Change Management Plan
How I Will Manage Possible
Stakeholder name How I Will Meet Needs
Improve chances for
organizational growth by taking Listen and respond to
ownership of initiative to improve organizational needs. Find online
web presence. Provide actionable solutions. Remain active following
recommendations for extending conclusion of Capstone study.
Support his efforts to improve Listen and respond positively to
VPFD web presence; listen to all initiatives; solicit new ideas.
feedback and edit accordingly.
Submit Google Analytics
Assist her in maintaining focus on information to VPFD. Define
VPFD social media initiatives. metrics significance. Promote
ideas for social media outreach.
Explain how keywords affect
Share keyword results; review organic search results. Submit
proposed metatags, H1 and H2 specific keyword guidelines;
headings and content for acknowledge that writing for the
optimization. web is different and must
contribute to improved SEO.
Provide adequate time to complete
Request assistance from other art
design. Respect the volunteer
Kim Canon directors on work for email and
nature of her relationship to the
Facebook and YouTube.
Provide site map and text
documents of current content.
Meet one-on-one with Melissa to
Provided adequate time to
Melissa Wetherby review status and learn CMS for
complete template development.
development of training manual.
Respect the volunteer nature of
her relationship to the project.
For the Vermont Partnership, coping with organizational power and conflict is usually an
external challenge. The VPFD is usually advocating or mediating situations in which power and
conflict are negatively affecting community.
Any organization will have an internal political component and it is important that everyone
inside the organization feels his or her voice is heard, especially as it relates to future
expansion. The executive director and the board of directors have developed a five-year plan
that will guide the organization’s development. Input was solicited from the entire organization.
This includes buy-in regarding the importance of moving beyond Windham county, moving away
from day-to-day advocacy and moving in the direction of mentoring and education.
Most important: the organization must keep asking for input from its staff. Respect their
intelligence and keep them involved in the community building process.
The Vermont Partnership will lead an important state diversity conference during the first week
of October. Completion of the refreshed website and associated social media tools will have
important symbolic significance for the Vermont Partnership. It will signal to social justice
organizations around the state the Vermont Partnership’s commitment to aiding a broader
segment of the Vermont population.
Successful completion of these tools will also have symbolic leadership connotations for the
Vermont Partnership vis-à-vis state government, education and business practices.