Change Management or Change Leadership?

Despite what others may tell you, being able to deliver and sustain improvements is notoriously difficult to achieve, we have developed a capability-building programme on 7 Key Change Leadership Principles to successfully embed change.

Discovery: We were asked to review why the technology change and automation projects in a large multi-national were failing to deliver the target benefits. After a series of discussions with key stakeholders it became clear that change was not landing well with those impacted by the new technology solutions. Those affected by the change did not know why the change was coming, when it was coming or what it meant for them. Ultimately the end users just had not been engaged until right at the end of the programme. Equally it became clear that whilst automation would improve many aspects of the customer experience, the customer journey and interaction had not been fully considered. With most of the solutions involving semi-automation the points of handover between automation and human interaction were an opportunity for error and frustration. This needed to be understood and resolved prior to launching the new technology solution

Assessment: We pulled together a fantastic group of change practioners that had experience working in the financial services and outside the sector, to bring together their best practice knowledge relative to the root cause issues that were identified. As a result 7 Key Principles were established that needed to be in place to be able to deliver change effectively. We defined this as Change Leadership rather than Change Management – paying close attention to how you lead others through change is pivotal to the ultimate success of the transformation. Those involved and impacted by the change will respond to the authenticity of the behaviours of the Leaders of Change

“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

Solution: these principles were developed into a two and half-day workshop, which was then rolled out to almost 1,000 business leaders. This is a key Philosophy at the heart of Dakota Transformation – building the capabilities in the existing leadership team to deliver transformation for themselves

Outcomes: as a result the overall 30% Efficiency Programme across the group was delivered with significant improvements in the sustainability of the results achieved.

The Principles: the image shows the 7 Key Change Leadership Principles, which were embedded throughout the standard Project Management Phases of Initiate, Plan, and Implement & Sustain.

Diving deeper into two of the principles :

Purpose: whilst most projects are focused on delivering to clear Objectives, taking that up a level to define a clear and compelling Purpose for the Transformation was identified as critical to the ultimate success. A clear and compelling Purpose can motivate the team, the stakeholders and indeed the business to support the change. A clear reason for change can also help those affected by the change understand the need for change, thus reducing the impact of resistance to change.

Emotional Responses to Change: there will always be resistance to change – it’s natural it comes from our deeply embedded Fight or Flight reaction to something we don’t fully understand. What is important for the leadership in the organisation is to genuinely become curious to understand where that resistance is coming from. In most cases those resisting the change are moving through the natural change curve. The role of a change leader is to understand where their people are on the change curve and help them move through it back to full engagement

If you would like to develop the capabilities to lead change far more effectively in your organisation, then please get in touch.