Published on 03/15/2017
The 1 Step to Leveling Up Your Change Management Process
Installing a Feedback Loop in Your Change Management Process
Earlier this week, we discussed how to develop an effective change management process. There’s tremendous value in identifying, implementing and managing new organization change initiatives. The next phase is a strong feedback loop. A feedback loop will help you report on change initiatives and measure their success, but also help you pivot for greater future success. This is a change management best practice to ensure organization-wide success.
Evaluating Change Starts with Visibility
After a change initiative is underway, successful managers reinforce change through ongoing assessment. On the one hand, change is never really finished. On the other, each change initiative must have a beginning and an end. After all, there are other initiatives in line. The lifecycle of a change management process ends with reporting and revision. It’s a huge value-add to have internal controls in place to fully understand what’s working and what needs improvement. One integral component is for managers to be close to the employees who carry out the change.
People, by nature, are often hesitant to change, so it’s the role of successful managers to offer as much support as possible. In the same way that good salespeople want to be close to the customer to ensure a successful sale or implementation, good change managers want to be close to those who are executing the change. By having a clear line of sight into change initiatives, managers can intervene and assist when appropriate to ensure excellent change execution.
To determine the success of a change initiative, leaders need to gather accurate progress updates from those involved. If we don’t know the score, then we can’t tell who’s winning. Being able to appropriately monitor the key performance indicators of our change management process gives leaders the ability to make informed decisions, such as making a pivot when teams are not meeting expectations. Course correcting in real-time is crucial for organizational improvement, as even the best laid plans go awry. There’s nothing wrong with changing an initiative, so as long as the metrics validate such a shift.
Successful Change Hinges on Engagement
As I’ve noted, change can be very challenging for employees. It’s often difficult for leaders to challenge the status quo and internal processes. But there are ways to engage employees and recognize outstanding performance. In the early implementation of change, celebrate the wins of those who follow the new process. Issue rewards at the individual and the team level to get the most organizational buy-in. Remember that incentives drive behavior.
Reviewing change and looking back on success is the final step in managing a change program. Celebrate the change victories together! Collectively evaluate the short-comings to understand why these change initiatives failed. Engaging stakeholders in both celebration and critical reviews has several benefits. Engaging stakeholders in the change management process provides more buy-in for the next round of change planning and execution. Engagement comes when stakeholders feel involved.
Ready for Change?
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