Recession increases risk and resistance

How to reduce both with a programme management based approach to change


Recession - its causes and its effects are a fact of life and likely to remain so for the forseeable future.

As the global economy contracts and markets shift the level of risk increases considerably across all dimensions of a business.

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Here are 8 key strategies for managing change that will mitigate that risk.




Resistance to the effects of the recession e.g. employee and customer fear of uncertainty - especially job security and financial security are also significant risks.

recession, risk, resistance,change management,change managers,change management training And these are risks that can be considerably mitigated by the utilisation of simple programme management principles and concepts.

For example - understanding the basic concepts, principles and dynamics of Stakeholder Mapping and Analysis together with a Communications Strategy can help considerably in achieving effective two-way communication.

Or when you are anticipating a step change, working through the basic concepts, principles and dynamics of a Blueprint, Benefit Profile and Management Strategy and a Risk Log and Strategy will greatly improve your internal and external communications with all stakeholders and provide you with key tools for successfully managing the changes.


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One of the best ways of mitigating risk and reducing stakeholder resistance in a recession is to use a programme management approach to change - because:

  • Holistic - It is holistic and takes a wider perspective.

  • Focus - It focuses you on addressing issues and aspects that otherwise get overlooked.

  • Impacts - It addresses the people impacts and issues arising as a direct and indirect result of your change initiative.

It will enable you to communicate a clear and unambiguous picture of precisely what you are seeking to achieve - and why.

It will get people talking and address the WIFM question ["What's in it for me"].




Apply this simple checklist to any proposed step change initiative.



  • What is your vision for the changed company? How is this communicated to staff? Does your staff share this vision?
  • How would you describe the company, its culture and core processes now - (key characteristics) – key issues (actions and behaviours) – major focus (areas of impact)?
  • What do you want the business to look like after everyone’s changed – how will the specifics of the culture and core processes have changed?
  • Do you have a clear blueprint that defines your organisation after the change?
  • Do you have a clear definition and documentation for each specific benefit to be realised by this change? (i.e. what is it – what difference will it make – where in organisation does it arise – how will its achievement be measured??)
  • Are these benefits communicated to staff?
  • Have you documented the “stakeholder map” all those who have an interest in the change? And specifically how the change will impact them?
  • Do you have a two-way communication strategy? Does it work?
  • Do you have an issues and risk management strategy (for the change)? Have you identified what can go wrong and put countermeasures in place?


Download this: Step Change Simple Checklist





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Return from Recession Risk to: "Where to start?"

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