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This Is How Successful Businesses Drive Change Management

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June 22, 2021
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4 minutes
Leo Saini
Experienced copywriter who spends a lot of money at restaurants and regrets it later.

Nothing is permanent but change. Whether it’s your personal life or business, change is inevitable and necessary.

However, creating and implementing new changes in a business is very complicated. The change management process requires proper planning and experienced personnel.

It also requires the people affected by the change be on board and accept the changes.

In this article, we will discuss how to drive successful change management in your company. You will also find examples of successful change implementations in some of the most renowned companies in the world.

So, here’s how top companies handle change management efficiently:

1. They Make Sure That Everyone In Management Is on Board With the Changes, Not just C-Suite Executives

Even though the change management process starts at an executive level, it will eventually affect other team members at a junior level, too. To incorporate change management in an organization, you need to change existing structures and processes so that the new ones are better aligned with your company’s new strategic vision. This is easier said than done.

For example, if you adopt the Agile methodology to streamline daily operations. The employees need to do the tasks at a faster pace and they may find it overwhelming initially. It’s your duty, as an organizational leader, to ensure the team that this change will be very beneficial to all of them in the long run. If employees demotivate and find the new processes exhausting, the change management process could fail.

“Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability.” Anne M. Mulcahy

2. They Are Willing to Change Their Entire Business Model With Time

Under some circumstances, successful change management in an organization requires a complete restructuring of the business model. Sometimes, external forces, such as changing a technological landscape and customer demands can drive change in a long-established business that has had the same business model for years.

A great example of this is the streaming services giant Netflix. In 1997, Netflix’s business model was to mail DVDs to its subscribers. But when internet streaming became a thing in 2007, the company realized that a change is necessary. And finally, the change management process led the company to new heights. If the company had kept offering DVDs, it would have gone bankrupt by now. But thanks to the change management process they chose, the company is now a household name and holds a huge market share despite the presence of competitors like Amazon Prime and Disney Plus.

3. They Use the Right Change Management Methodology

You may be wondering: what does change management methodology mean? Well, to put it in simple terms, change management methodology is a well-structured process for organizational change. Some examples can include the Kotter’s Change Management Model, Lewin’s Change Management Model, Bridges’ Transition Model, and the ADKAR Change Management Model, to name a few.

It’s understandable if these terms seem very confusing to you. Don’t worry, you don’t have to get down to the nitty-gritty of it—you can hire a change management consultant to choose the right method for your company. Change management frameworks are tried and tested. If you follow the right process, you may be able to implement change in your organization without any friction. However, flying blind and creating your own process may not be the best idea.

4. They Manage Scope Creeps Efficiently

Whether a company is building a new product or changing its operational processes, change management in an organization is a project after all. And with new projects, comes scope creeps. The companies that manage change successfully are the ones that handle scope creeps with efficiency.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Use the Agile framework to begin with. This method prepares your team for change from the get-go. And even if unexpected scope creeps occur, you’d likely be able to handle it with ease.
  • Make a list of possible new deliverables that you need to add to the project at a later stage.
  • Have a strategy to procure extra resources that may be required at short notice. For example, if in the middle of the project, you realize that you need a freelance management consultant, you could contact a freelance consulting platform and they’ll find you an experienced consultant in a matter of days.
  • Expect scope creep and do not let it overwhelm you. Even though it’s easier said than done, anticipating new additions and subtractions prepares you to face scope creeps in advance.

5. They Set Clear Success Metrics and Know When a Goal Is Actually Achieved

Completing a change management project on time does not mean it’s successful. It only means that a project has achieved its final deliverable and there’s nothing left to do. Project success, on the other hand, can only be declared if the company achieves the goals for which the project was undertook.

Let’s consider an example to understand this point a little better. In order to increase sales and allow customers to order online conveniently, Domino’s initiated a massive digital transformation project. The Domino’s Anyware system allows customers to order pizzas from a vast range of apps and devices, including but not limited to the following: Alexa, Slack, smart TVs, smartwatches, a tweet from Twitter, and even Facebook messenger.

This was a very new, not to mention risky, project to undertake. However, just because Domino’s enabled customers to order from anywhere didn’t mean that customers would actually do that. But they did! And Domino’s enjoyed a substantial increase in revenue.

So, in this case, the success of the project was measured by the extra revenue that the Domino’s Anyware system brought, not the successful creation of the system itself. The company’s goal was not to create a new type of technology, but to sell more of their products! It achieved the goal, and that’s what real change management project success is all about.