Strategies For Managing Change

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Where Kotter's 8 Steps Gets it Wrong

As with so many things in life a partial truth is so often presented as the whole truth. There are great strengths, much insight and wisdom in Kotter's famous 8 Steps change model, but there also some glaring and critical omissions...

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John Kotter - 8 Step Change Model

John Kotter's highly regarded books 'Leading Change' (1995) and the follow-up 'The Heart Of Change' (2002) describe his popular and helpful 8 Steps Model for understanding and managing change.

Each stage acknowledges a key principle identified by Kotter as relating to people's response and approach to change, and specifically people see, feel and then change.

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John Kotter - Creating A Sense Of Urgency For Change

In "A Sense of Urgency" (Harvard Business Press, 2008) Kotter develops the theme from the first of his famous 8 Steps Model and highlights the 2 types of urgency.

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John Kotter - Leading People Through Change in Difficult Times

According to John Kotter, many organisations are now much better at managing and guiding change.

But he suggests that the current rate of change is faster than the rate at which organisations are improving, and he feels that gap is increasing.

Kotter identifies 5 implications:

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Beckhard - Change Equation Model

Beckhard's change equation can be seen as a major milestone in the field of Organisational Development in that it acknowledged the role and importance of employee involvement in change.

It represented a significant shift in management thinking from the "command and control" of the industrial age to a people centric approach.

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Daryl Conner - Managing At The Speed Of Change

Daryl Conner suggests that as we now live in an era of perpetual change and disturbance, we need to expect more change:"we need to stop assuming we are one project away from things settling down."

The leader’s role in change is not to make people feel happy about the change: it’s helping them succeed despite their discomfort.

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Kurt Lewin's Force field analysis

Lewin’s force field analysis provides a practical tool for assessing the case for change - a necessary precursor to the creation and implementation of a successful change initiative.

It does this by identifying the key forces and drivers for making the change and also those key forces that will be in resistance to the change.

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ADKAR Change Model - Evaluation Of Its Strengths And Weaknesses

In my view, the clear strength of the ADKAR model is that provides a useful management checklist of the phases of a change initiative. However, there are 4 major weaknesses in this model:

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Kubler-Ross - Mapping The Impacts Of Change

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross undertook seminal work on the grief process. The business significance of her work has been the realisation that people go through similar responses when faced with lesser – but still significant changes in their working and personal lives.

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74% of European Organisations Are Digital Transformation Laggards

Seven out of ten European organisations are struggling with realising their digital maturity ambitions, according to a new study by IDC. As it stands, less than three out of ten have managed to significantly digitise their business models, processes, products and services.

The research polled 375 leaders in Europe across multiple industries to gain insight in their digital transformation maturity and the growth obstacles they face.

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William Bridges - Navigating The Transitions Of Change

William Bridges was one of the first thought leaders to focus on the human side - the emotional dimension of change. Bridges sees change as situational and transition as psychological - thus change is an external event [it is what happens to you], whereas transition is an internal experience [it is how you respond to what happens to you].

He explains how to deal with those transitions.

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What Does It Mean to Change the Game?

Embracing “disruption” requires a shift in mindset, but those companies that welcome change can dramatically improve project outcomes. Here's how:

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Self-Promotion And Leadership: A 'Necessary Evil' For Some

"I'm fortunate to have coached numerous senior-level women with considerable experience and expertise who have not gained the title or pay grade they deserve. They feel stuck and frustrated, watching others less capable advance in their careers. One key differentiator is self-promotion."

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William Bridges - 3 Simple Questions to Lead People Through a Change Transition

In my experience and in my view - it is the people related issues that lie behind the failure of so many significant organisational change initiatives.

As Bridges succinctly puts it: "A change can work only if the people affected by it can get through the transition it causes successfully."

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Managing Transitions - 3 Guidelines To Successful Change Management

Change is an emotional business. The failure to address the human impacts of change is at the root of most failed change initiatives. It is not enough just to "manage" change; people need to be led through change. Here are 3 important guidelines that William Bridges' highlights:

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The Best Leaders Don’t Hide Their Imperfections

True, effective leadership, in the military and also in business, is not the stereotypical fist-pounding, tight-lipped leadership we often see in soundbytes or in cinema...

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Why Are Some Leadership Development Programs Such Train Wrecks?

While studies have shown that diverse leadership teams are correlated with better financial performance, many organizations have struggled with how to actually get the most out of those diverse teams in a way that drives better performance.

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Dealing With Resistance to Change - 5 Guiding Principles

Here are 5 key aspects to dealing with resistance to change:

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Resistance To Change - I Was Told To Sack Her, But She Saved The Project

Resistance to change is often a mask for deep-seated fears and resentments that directly arise from the disconnect that occurs as senior management willfully do not seek and respond to direct feedback from the frontline - and the human consequences of their decisions.

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10 Ways To Identify Leadership Gaps Within Your Company

Leadership gaps often come to light when mistakes occur or a project has gotten off track. This can be avoided. Here are tips to identify these gaps and fix them:

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Leaders - How To Create The Energy For Change

Seasoned business leaders must anticipate changes - they operate with a future focus and can therefore become frustrated when everyone else in the company doesn’t catch up as quickly.

Here are 4 ways to help your team coalesce around a shared vision, and then power them through the initial hurdles.

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Leadership - Why Punishing Mistakes Only Serves To Sabotage Your Company

When people fear mistakes, they underachieve and underperform. Your team needs the confidence to be bold and fearless because that’s where the value is created. To help your employees’ to be daring enough to fail, use these three strategies:

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Leadership Versus Management - In Change Initiatives

Is change just about management or, does it involve leadership? John Kotter explains the difference.

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Kurt Lewin's Change Model: Freeze-Unfreeze-Freeze

Lewin's model is one for the first and thus the more famous, it sees organisational change as a move from one static [frozen] state via a state of activity [unfreezing] to another static state [frozen].

This model may seem out of step with a world where constant change is the norm. But an understanding of the theory and dynamics of Lewin's work is an important foundation for insights derived from subsequent theories and models.

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3 Traits of Effective and Inspiring Leadership

In this video, Entrepreneur Network partner Mike Phillips discusses how you can evaluate if you and others are good leaders. Phillips points to three metrics of good leadership.

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Breaking Down Silos in your Business

Businesses need to transform to stay competitive or be in danger of going the way of once great brands like Nokia, Blockbuster or Kodak who saw the writing on the wall but didn’t act fast enough to adapt.

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Facilitative Leadership - The key to Dealing With Resistance To Change

As a leader - do you ensure the wider involvement of people at all levels - especially in the informal networks?

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Workplace Communication - Say What You Mean And Mean What You Say

The greatest stumbling block to effective workplace communication is the emotional and psychological distance between organisational leaders and those who are led. This distance leads to a disconnect that can be devastating in situations of major organisational change.

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Barriers To Effective Communication - But Do They FEEL What You Are Saying?

The career progression of senior executives in this environment puts them further and further away from the human impacts of their decisions. The people side gets disregarded - or at best seen as a "soft"issue.

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Why Use A Change Management Consultant?

There are a number of factors that will have a bearing on how you approach using a change management consultant – or in determining whether you even should do so.

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Toxic Leadership - The Abuse Of Power And Its Destructiveness

Here are 3 of my best strategies for dealing with toxic leadership if you have the misfortune of working for a boss like that.

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8 Key Pointers to To Successful Change Implementation

As Machiavelli put it so succinctly in "The Prince":"...there is nothing more difficult to arrange, more doubtful of success... than initiating a new order of things." Here are some practical pointers:

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How To Ensure Effective Two-Way Communication With ALL Your Change Program Stakeholders

The key questions that you need to address, and the 5 guiding principles.

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Why is Communicating Change so Hard To Do?

Lessons learned from a PhD in change communication.

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Does Your Change Management Plan Cut It In The Digital Age?

Traditional change management practices weren’t built for digital transformation. Here’s how to rethink two key aspects of your approach.

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Digital Transformation: 4 Mistakes That Ruin ROI

Companies on the road to change want to deliver as much value as possible from digital transformation projects. These common mistakes steal value.

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3 Walls IT Leaders Must Take Down

Many IT leaders make three operational mistakes that build walls between the IT organization and the rest of the business. Here’s how to fix that.

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Why Digital Transformations Fail: 3 Exhausting Reasons

Fatigue from continuous change is a top reason why more than 70 percent of digital transformations fail. Let's examine the three factors that cause exhaustion – and how to avoid them.

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Digital Transformation: 3 Change Management Mistakes To Avoid

The degree of change and the pace of change both pick up during a digital transformation. Don’t let these common change management mistakes trip you up.

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What Happens When Teams Fight Burnout Together

Here’s a vexing paradox. On the one hand, companies are offering more wellness and well-being options than ever before, including mindfulness and yoga classes, nap rooms, and fitness facilities.

On the other hand, employee burnout has risen to such a level that the World Health Organization now considers it a workplace hazard.

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The Powerful Drivers and Blockers of Leadership

Exploring the hidden forces that motivate and hinder you can make you a better leader.

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OPINION: Why Change Fails (And What To Do About It)

According to a 2018 report by leading research and advisory company, Gartner, the typical organisation today has undertaken five major firmwide changes in the past three years with almost 75% of organisations expecting to multiply the types of major change initiatives they will undertake in the next three years. Yet the report states that half of the change initiatives fail, and only 34% are a clear success.

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Nancy Pelosi Changes Course: The Art Of The Leadership Pivot

Conventional wisdom used to say that in a jam, a leader had to make a decision, any decision, and then stick to it.

No more.

Nancy Pelosi has just demonstrated the courage it takes to change one’s mind – with the whole world watching.

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Change Management: Backbone Of Digital Transformation

The pressure to change has never been greater for companies. Changing market requirements make digital transformation not an option, but a necessity. The question is how?

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7 Reasons Internal Communications Is at the Centre of All Change Management

Change management is the new normal and change management teams spend a lot of time figuring out how to implement the “soft side” of organizational changes - often unsuccessfully.

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The Five Biggest Challenges Facing Agile

Agile is the way private sector firms must be run if they want to cope with the massive rapid change, increasing complexity and pervasive disruption of the 21st Century marketplace.

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4 Harsh Truths You Must Accept to Become a Better Leader

What it takes to motivate and inspire people requires a better understanding of how people are wired on a human, emotional, and psychological level. To better grasp that understanding, here are four non-negotiable truths to shoot for in your development as a leader:

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Leadership - 5 Steps for Giving Productive Feedback

For a number of people, hearing the six words: "Can I give you some feedback?" generates fear and anxiety. The words go through a translator in our brain and are heard as: "Can I completely tear you down?"

Here are five tips that can get you on track to giving productive feedback:

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The Lost Leadership Art of Positive Feedback

It is critically important as a leader to give team members consistent feedback, not only on what they need to improve but also what they are doing well.

Here is a simple plan for giving your team constructive compliments that boost productivity.

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