If you’re looking to implement a change, you need to build your change team. Originally called “creating a guiding coalition”, for us it’s a little more down to earth. It’s about having friends with the hands and feet to implement the change. And the brains and heart to provide feedback and coaching on the change.
Let’s say you’ve got your project all lined up to implement. The project management approach is sound. By combining good project management and change capabilities in the right change agents, you can create a force for positive change in an organization. Here’s the job description for change agents:
1. Help senior executives and managers play an active leadership role that ensures people support the change
2. Help people in the organization to see a real personal need for change, and to understand the project vision
3. Identify project stages and activities where high levels of involvement are required – and facilitate this involvement so that commitment is built
4. Deal with resistance to change
5. Build plans that ensures people have the necessary skills and motivation to meet new demands the change brings
6. Work with leaders and other employees to ensure the change is “biting” where it most needs to
7. Develop follow-up plans to accelerate the acceptance of change
Change agents help build the change management skills an organization needs to sustain the change. You need specific hands-on training and follow-up coaching to make sure the change agents are equipped to handle the resistance. In order for employees to embrace change, the organization must embrace change as a whole.