Managing the Change

Category: Education

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INTRODUCTION Change is inevitable in the life of on organization. In today’s business world, most of the organizations are facing a dynamic and changing business environment. They should either change or die, there is no third alternative. Organizations that learn and cope with change will thrive and flourish and others who fail to do so will be wiped out. Change management is a structured approach to transitioning individuals, teams, and organizations from a current state to a desired future state. Change management (or change control) is the process during which the changes of a system are implemented in a controlled manner by following a pre-defined framework/model with, to some extent, reasonable modifications In Project Management, Change Management refers to a Project Management process where changes to a project are formally introduced and approved. The field of change management grew from the recognition that organizations are comprised of people. And the behaviors of people make up the outputs of an organization


RESPONSIBILITY FOR MANAGING CHANGE The employee does not have a responsibility to manage change - the employee's responsibility is no other than to do their best, which is different for every person and depends on a wide variety of factors (health, maturity, stability, experience, personality, motivation, etc). Responsibility for managing change is with management and executives of the organization - they must manage the change in a way that employees can cope with it. The manager has a responsibility to facilitate and enable change, and all that is implied within that statement, especially to understand the situation from an objective standpoint (to 'step back', and be non-judgmental), and then to help people understand reasons, aims, and ways of responding positively according to employees' own situations and capabilities. Increasingly the manager's role is to interpret, communicate and enable - not to instruct and impose, which nobody really responds to well.


CHANGE MANAGEMENT PROCESS The change management process is the sequence of steps or activities that a change management team or project leader would follow to apply change management to a project or change. Based on Prosci's research of the most effective and commonly applied change, most change management processes contain the following three phases: Phase 1 - Preparing for change (Preparation, assessment and strategy development) Phase 2 - Managing change (Detailed planning and change management implementation) Phase 3 - Reinforcing change (Data gathering, corrective action and recognition) These phases result in the following approach as shown below in Figure


RESISTANCE MANAGEMENT Resistance from employees and managers is normal. Persistent resistance, however, can threaten a project. The change management team needs to identify, understand and manage resistance throughout the organization. Resistance management is the processes and tools used by managers and executives with the support of the project team to manage employee resistance. Resistance to change is an ongoing problem. At both the individual and the organizational levels, resistance to change impairs concerted efforts to improve performance. Many corporate change efforts have been initiated at tremendous cost only to be halted by resistance among the organization's employees. Organizations as a whole also manifest behavior similar to that of individuals when faced with the need to change.


THE BIGGEST MISTAKES IN MANAGING CHANGE Not understanding the importance of people. 60-75 percent of all restructuring failed -- not because of strategy, but because of the "human dimension." Michael Hammer, author of Reengineering the Corporation said, "I wasn't smart enough about people. I was reflecting my engineering background and was insufficiently appreciate of the human dimension. I've learned that's critical.“ Not appreciating that people throughout the organization have different reactions to change. The change-adept are not necessarily more competent than their co-workers, but they have distinct advantages in the attitudes they hold and the strategies they adopt. Change-adept professionals build greater resilience and not only survive, but flourish in changing times. There are five factors that determine which individuals deal successfully with change.

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Treating transformation as an event, rather than a mental, physical and emotional process. Lacking "emotional literacy" we disregarded the wrenching emotional process of large-scale change -- and when we began to address the emotional component, we underestimated its depth. Being less than candid. Under the rationale of "protecting" people, we presented change with a too positive "spin." And the more we "sugar-coated" the truth, the wider the trust gap grew between management and the work force.


THIRTEEN TIPS FOR MANAGING CHANGE Dennis Sparks, Executive Director of the National Staff Development Council, offers these 13 tips for managing the complex and difficult change process (Sparks, 1993): Educate the leaders of change, including both principals and teachers. Use a "systems" approach to ensure that all aspects of the school organization are considered when planning and implementing change. Use a team approach that involves many stakeholders in the change process. Share power with teachers and others to encourage the implementation of the change efforts. Make plans, but "hold your plans loosely." Develop plans, but know that they will have to be adapted to change as needs change.

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Realize that there is a tension between establishing readiness for change and the need to get people implementing new approaches quickly. While getting people intellectually ready for change is something to be considered, it should not take so much time and effort that people lose interest and motivation. Provide considerable amounts of training and staff development for those involved. These activities can include everything from holding study groups to "on-the-dash" coaching. Choose innovative practices for and with teachers that are research-based and "classroom friendly." Picking approaches that have been used or researched can help the implementation of those approaches. Recognize that change happens only through people. The emotional effects of change on educators need to be considered and understood by all involved in the change process. Understanding resistance and working with it is key.

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Be prepared for "implementation dip." Fullan (1993) and others note that things often get worse temporarily before improvement begins to appear. Help educators and others develop an "intellectual understanding" of the new practices. While the outcomes are important to assess, people also need to understand the underlying meanings and functions of the practices. Seek out "paradigm shifters" and "idea champions" who are interested in making substantial changes in practice. Take the long view; realize that change takes time and should not be forced to occur too quickly.


CONCLUSION At last I concluded my presentation, the areas or components of a change management program, along with the change management process; they create a system for managing change. Good project managers apply these components effectively to ensure project success, avoid the loss of valued employees, and minimize the negative impact of the change on productivity and a company's customers.

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