Change management principles

31The change manager’s role is to ease the journey towards new ways of working. Change management is a structured approach, ensuring changes are smoothly implemented minimising disruption, ensuring the benefits of the change are achieved. What principles can be used to achieve a smooth transition? What implications need to be considered?

Change management principles can be summed up as;-

At the outset, as soon as the change is agreed in principle at senior level, brief people within the organisation. Closely involve everyone who is affected directly by the change, and keep the rest of the workforce informed.
Appoint a Change Champion or working group, depending on the size of the organisation and the project
Understand where the organisation is at the moment, where you want to be, when, and why. Define clear, measurable targets.

Undertake a detailed gap analysis and list what the steps will be for achievement of the plan. And plan development towards your target in appropriate achievable measurable stages. Establish Milestones.

Continue to communicate, enable and facilitate involvement from people, as early, openly, and fully as is possible. Allow flexibility in the plan to accommodate relevant feedback.

Design and implement learning programmes.

Set up cross cultural groups, to allow cross fertilisation of ideas and bonding in new ways across the company. This could be in the form of briefing groups, or learning programmes.

Once roll out begins, highlight achieved and future milestones .Continue to update everyone on progress achieved, problems encountered, invite solutions, tell everyone what you need from them to achieve target.

Business development changes

Business development is often random rather than planned. The business evolves, reacting to opportunities to develop the business as they present themselves. There are often many routes to consider when developing strategy, some of which cannot be foreseen.

Once you have established the business development aims, and formulated a business development strategy, consider the implications for the following areas and their potential redevelopment.

Existing business organization, shape, structure and processes.



IT systems

new product development

new market development

sales and marketing development

new technology implementation

tools, equipment, plant,


supply-chain development

people, management and communications

distribution routes

international development

mergers, acquisitions and disposals

Most of us work in fast changing environments now, so it’s best to focus on the detail for immediate plan actions, not medium-to-long-term plans.

Use workshops and forums to get the participation of interested parties. This enables their input to be gained, commitment secured, and automatically communicates the actions needed and targets expected. They are also useful to review priorities, agree broad medium-to-long-term vision, and to agree short term action.

Empower people to make decisions at a local operating level, delegate responsibility and power and encourage people to make recommendations. Encourage capable people to join the “Change Champion” group, and develop them

The change manager’s role is to ease the journey towards new ways of working, Change management involves ensuring change is implemented smoothly and with lasting benefits. This is done by considering the wider impact on the organization and people within it. Each change initiative you are involved in will have its own unique set of objectives, problems and activities.