7 Key Elements in Making Change

At one level every individual understands that changing and adapting is key in any organisation.

Of course understanding is clearly important.  Equally there is often a big difference between what people understand and what is actually delivered when it comes to making change.

So what are 7 key elements in making any change within organisations?

Element 1: Clarity about the current situation

If you are ever going to have any chance of making change, it’s vital that you can clearly articulate what’s wrong with what is currently happening and the impact of doing nothing.

Without this it’s going to be really difficult to get much progress.

Element 2: Clarity about future state and the benefits

People want to know where they are heading and what the benefits are of making the change.

You have to be able to paint a clear picture of the future in such a way that excites, inspires and motivates people.

Element 3: The options for reaching the future state

Rarely is there only being one way to get from where you currently are to where you want to get to.

It’s important to start with a long list of options, including some that might well seem off the radar.

From this long list you can consolidate, come up with a shorter list of options that you explore in some depth.

Element 4: The change team

Getting the right team is vitally important.

What you want to avoid is a situation where you get too much of the same type of person.

Diversity in terms of experience, knowledge, skills and attributes is vital.

Element 5: The change plan

It’s good to know where you are and where you want to get to in broad terms.

Of course this needs to be underpinned by a detailed step by step change plan with milestones, measures and clarity about who is responsible for what.

Element 6: Governance and management

Making change creates uncertainty.  There are risks.

Good governance, management and oversight helps to keep things on track.

Element 7: Commitment of a critical mass of people

If you’re going to make change you have to get the buy-in, support and commitment of what I call a critical mass.

Key to this is being clear about why change is needed, involving people in the change and being willing to listen and adapt.

In truth making change is important in any organisation.  Getting the balance right between people and process goes a long way towards making change in my experience.

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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