What is change management? Something that would surely make businessmen from decades ago scratch at their heads in confusion.
Some time ago – the precise period may vary – companies and businesses all sought out one main thing: stability. Through stability comes safety and safety grants a predictable influx of income. No one wanted the possibility of something arising that could completely turn their work upside down. Moreover, it’s always better to keep doing the same thing over and over again in order to polish and perfect it, right?
That was the case indeed, but nowadays you can pretty much only dream of a situation where you can keep your footing steady while the whole world changes around you. No, you need to change with the flow, otherwise you’ll just end up drowning.
Needless to say, there’s a very good reason why people prefer stability despite all of this. Whenever you undergo a change, whether it’s as a corporate identity or as an individual, you need to tread on some really thin ice. It’s difficult to get yourself to adapt to the new reality, let alone a whole company and the people populating it.
That being said, this is why something like change management exists.
What Is Change Management?
Change management is the process through which you guide your business through a period of transition of any kind. It’s a multitude of skills which create the perfect strategy that can guarantee a smooth transformation. Usually, these skills refer to:
- Executive leadership and support;
- Employee involvement;
- Planning and analysis;
- Building support through effective preparation;
- Addressing factors that will create resistance to change
In simpler words, change management is nothing more than the resources and methods you allocate toward a transition period so that it can be as fruitful as possible. Said change can be of two types.
It’s not all about the changes underwent by the whole company, but by the personnel as well, even if it’s on a specific and individual level. If you understand what someone who’s currently in the middle of a transition period, you can make the best out of it.
A good example is someone switching positions and trying to adapt to the requirements of their new job. Your change management would involve patience, guidance, and leadership.
The needs and wants of the customers are changing and you need to adapt and rethink your strategy. You are rewriting your goals or refreshing a product concept. These changes happen all the time and you need to make sure that everything goes smoothly.
In Conclusion: Do You Need Change Management?
Yes, of course.
What is change management, exactly? It’s something that you absolutely need if you want to help your company, as a whole or boiled down to each individual, to survive the transition and to thrive. We need this skillset particularly because humans are, by default, creatures who try to subconsciously fight change. We seek out safe havens and stability, so if someone can convince us to step out and move forward, it means they have great change management skills.
- HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Change Management
- Change Management: The People Side of Change
- Leading Change, With a New Preface by the Author
- Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard
- Lean Change Management: Innovative Practices For Managing Organizational Change