Strategies for managing change - How to avoid the 70% failure rate

8 key steps to success


When considering strategies for managing change, it is sobering to realise that 70% of all change initiatives fail to realise the intended benefits - and many just simply fail!

As Machiavelli put it so succinctly in "The Prince":

"It should be borne in mind that there is nothing more difficult to arrange, more doubtful of success, and more dangerous to carry through than initiating a new order of things."

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Strategic perspectives on strategies for managing change


Here are the specific resources on this site that are directly related to "change strategy":

Change management strategy - the key leadership issues

strategies for managing change,how to manage change,change management,change managers,change management training Change management strategy is very specifically about moving from the output of your strategic review to a successful programme implementation. Here is how to directly address key strategic leadership issues by taking full account of the people who are most impacted by the change

Strategic thinking and leadership - resources

A cross section of strategic thinking and leadership resources listed on this page represent material that I have found to be useful - and each of the resources outlined are in their own way a gateway to a wider range of resources related to strategies for managing change.

Strategic leadership questions

Here are some good strategic leadership questions to ask yourself during the planning process before starting out on your change management initiative

Strategic vision and programme implementation

Bridging the gap between your strategic vision and a successful programme implementation is absolutely key to realising the benefits of your initiative.

But this is a big gap - and it is one that is frequently not recognised.

So often I see organisations attempting to move straight from strategic vision exercises - mission statements and the setting of strategic objectives into the detail of a project level implementation.

Here is my own model for change that addresses the key hidden cultural aspects of an organisation - and in so doing links vision to implementation - by showing what needs to be addressed:




8 key strategies for managing change


In my experience of practical strategies for managing change, and based on my studies and research, I have identified 8 key areas that need to be considered and addressed in order to maximise your chances of success with a change initiative.


(1) Drivers

- Assessing the drivers for change

(2) Business As Usual

- The “Business As Usual” test [step change or incremental change]

(3) Resources and Capabilities

- Determining resources and capabilities needed - especially in relation to:

    - the size of your organisation
    - the size, scope and priority of your change initiative
    - the extent and scope of your knowledge base

(4) Leadership

- The style and quality of leadership that you provide

(5) Cultural Impacts

- Recognising and addressing the cultural change

(6) Preparation and Planning

- The thoroughness of your pre programme review and planning process

(7) Macro management

- Using a programme management based methodology that takes the wider view and addresses all of the key issues and aspects that otherwise get overlooked and are a direct cause of failure.

(8) Micro management

- Translating vision and strategy into actionable steps

I have listed them above in summary form, now I will take each in turn and cross reference to the key related material on this site.




(1) Drivers


Assessing the case for change: Force field analysis is the creation of the American social psychologist Kurt Lewin, widely regarded one of the early 20th century founders of modern psychology, who developed the change model - known as "Lewin's Freeze Phases" - and which still forms the underlying basis of many change management theories models and strategies for managing change.

Lewin’s force field analysis work provides useful background and a practical tool for assessing the case for change – a necessary precursor for the creation and implementation of a programme based approach to managing change, and an integral aspect of strategies for managing change.




(2) Business As Usual


The single biggest and most important early decision that you will make, is to decide whether the change can be handled within the context of business as usual or not.

The “Business As Usual” test - Incremental or Step Change?




(3) Resources and Capabilities


The size of your organisation (number of employees or people directly involved) together with your knowledge base will determine what resources to consider to implement your strategies for managing change.

Recommendations re options and uses of external third party change management resources




(4) Leadership


Leadership versus management - Is change just about the management or, does it involve leadership? If so, what's the difference?

Define leadership - How you define and exercise leadership in the present climate will be a significant determinant in your organisation's fortunes and is thus a key aspect of your strategies for managing change.

What are the leadership styles that are most effective in leading change and especially in the current environment?

How do you inspire your people in tough times? How do you provide inspirational motivation to people living with the constant insecurities engendered by the current economic climate?

How do you deal with downsized workforces populated with employees who suffer from any or all of the following negative emotions: insecurity, dread, apathy, passivity, carelessness, and resentment?




(5) Cultural Impacts


What are the effects of your business culture on change management?

Organisational culture - is more important than you may realise. It determines how your people will respond to a change initiative.




(6) Preparation and Planning


The amount of time allocated to the pre-programme review and planning process is variable - the size of the proposed change and how business critical it is, are useful guidelines.

But whatever time is allocated, it is time very well spent as the process is designed to make you:

(1) Think deeply about your proposed change;

(2) Understand as fully as possible the impact it is likely to have, and

(3) Work out clearly exactly how you are going to reap the benefits from the change.




(7) Macro management


Of all change management methodologies, at the macro level, the programme management based approach to change management is the one most likely to ensure that you avoid the 70% failure rate.

A programme management based approach has as it goal, the full realisation of the business benefits [that will be derived from the delivery of the new capability]. In my view, this is a very big shift in emphasis from the traditional [and unsuccessful] project based approach to change.

It is this holistic approach that links vision to strategy and all the way through to implementation and successful benefit realisation.

This is why I have based so much of my whole approach to successful change management on a programme management based approach to leading and managing change.




(8) Micro management


Managing change in the workplace requires hands-on detailed management [micro management on occasions] in the specifics of how to do it, and especially during the early stages.

It is up to you to define and communicate those actionable steps, and to manage your people through the process of implementing and integrating those steps as the new modus operandi.

At the micro - day to day management level: Incremental change = translating vision and strategy into actionable steps.

Learn HOW to apply these strategies - 8 FREE Lessons - HERE




Proper preparation and planning


I am a firm believer in "proper preparation and planning", and I firmly believe that it is worth making the investment of leadership and management time at the outset of a change initiative, to save an inestimable amount of time and resource with a rushed and ill-considered initiative.

strategies for managing change,how to manage change,change management,change managers,change management training




Accessing wider resources


You will find many Resources in this site - plus many Free downloads of all key strategies for managing change.

Also, throughout this site you will find that there are many external links to quality information re all aspects related to strategies for managing change, all of which I have checked out personally all of which I have checked out personally, and which I trust you will find beneficial.

Please do make use of the How to manage change in practise section to raise questions re change management tools, or to seek clarification or to add your own perspective or experience.

The Site Map and SiteSearch facility will enable you to search on any word or phrase within this site, or you can use the Site Map




Organisational change is inseparable from personal change


The scale and pace of change that is impacting organisations now is such that it increasingly pushes leaders (and followers) beyond their own capacity to handle it.

This scale and pace of change requires adaptive solutions. But this is only possible when we have either the personal capacity to do this, or have the self-improvement resources to help us.

We can't change because of our "immunity to change" or inner resistance.

Managing Personal Change - Resources HERE




Managing Personal Change

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Is your organisation
overwhelmed by change?

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practitioners masterclass,change management training,change managers,change management



practitioners masterclass,change management training,change managers,change management



practitioners masterclass,change management training,change managers,change management


practitioners masterclass,change management training,change managers,change management


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