(Based on: Beckhard & Harris, 1987)
to get from
here to there:
work to be done
need for change
degree of choice
Determining WHY change is needed
• Determining WHAT to change
• Determining WHO to change
• Determining HOW to change
“Before we build a better
mousetrap, we need to find
out if there are any mice out
• Are there serious risks if we do NOT
• Are there serious risks if we DO change?
• Can we make sufficient time to search for
and deliberate about an optimal strategy
for planning and managing the change?
• Can we take the risk of offering
alternatives that differ from leaders’
The first step in any
innovative process is
an ACT OF
Complex systems change is
experienced by some involved
parties as a threat of destruction of
familiar, comfortable conditions
where they felt competent and
• How is the Current State different from the
• How is the Current State similar to the
• What resources that are needed to achieve
Desired State are already present?
• What requisite resources are missing?
• Single or mixed strategy
• Action steps
• Responsible parties
• Time lines
• Resource allocation
• Project management
• Cost and schedule management
◦ Deliberate, disciplined, and
◦ Prefer change that maintains the
◦ Enjoy predictability
◦ Honor tradition and established
◦ Practical, agreeable, flexible
◦ Prefer workable outcomes
◦ More focused on results than
◦ Open to both sides of an
◦ More team-oriented
◦ Challenge the current
◦ Challenge accepted
◦ May be impractical
The Change Agents
◦Articulate the need for change
◦Are accepted as trustworthy
◦Can take multiple perspectives
◦Motivate people to change
◦Active or Passive
◦Always see change as a
Change masters have dealt
with resisters in different
ways over the years.
◦ Start by identifying people who have
something to lose and try to
anticipate how they will respond
◦ Learn from the resisters…they may
have a point!
◦ Communicate the “why” of change to
◦Emphasize the benefits of
change to potential resisters
◦Help resisters find new roles
◦Remember that loss of control
encourages resistance. Make
potential resisters active
partners in the change
Change and the process of
changing create uncertainty
that is experienced as a threat
and is felt at individual
cognitive, organizational, and
political levels --
Direct the Rider
Motivate the Elephant
Shape the Path
it take to change a
Planning occurs before
Understand the impetus for change (opportunity, crisis, etc.).
Develop the mission, vision, and strategies to achieve change.
◦ Is the need for change clear? …compelling? …shared?
Secure leadership commitment to change (partners in change).
Mobilize energy by communicating the vision with staff.
Address Reactions of Uncertainty/Hesitation
◦ Connect the vision for change to what people value.
◦ Use data, stories, and emotional appeal to communicate need.
Start change at the periphery.
Communicate the change – what is the
destination and why is it worth it.
Reinforce a supportive culture of change.
◦ Ensure a psychologically safe workplace for staff to express concerns
◦ Help staff build the capabilities to implement change
◦ Engage staff in implementing change and in sharing the vision
Address Reactions of Doubt and Resistance
◦ Communicate at all levels of the organization. Ask for input. Use it.
◦ Listen and understand objections. Hold people accountable.
◦ Break down the change into small steps (specific actions vs. ‘big picture’).
Recognize and reward employees
helping to implement change.
Continue to mobilize (and communicate) energy and support.
Celebrate improving positive outcomes (performance, relationships).
Continue to eliminate barriers
Move Reactions Toward Acceptance
◦ Provide staff with the systems or resources to support change.
◦ Mobilize leadership in modeling positive change behaviors.
◦ Communicate positive changes through feedback on relationships,
functions, and performance.
Institutionalize success by making
connections between new behaviors
and organizational success.
Monitor change and adjust strategies, as needed.
Continue to build and encourage positive habits
Move Reactions Toward Engagement
◦ Use performance measurements and accountability systems to
provide feedback on change.
◦ Stay engaged with those affected by the change – seek to