Posted by: christopherfeld | April 3, 2011

The importance of change management

Change management is critical to implementing any new system. This post will offer some of my thoughts on a research project that I’m doing with a large global organization whose name I will not disclose due to confidentiality.

No matter how good the system, the human element must be considered for it to succeed. This organization does virtually everything from a functional perspective. As it has redesigned its performance management system, the impact of the change has not taken effect. This organization had virtually no consistent PM function. Conversations were not productive, and merit increases were given to individuals whom for personal reasons. The new system is much more consistent, yet employees aren’t bought into it. This is because managers aren’t required to go through trainings that show them how to use the system.

The change process is not complete. When I asked why managers weren’t required to use it, I was told by a high level administrator that they were fighting so hard to get it together, that they just aren’t there yet. In order to create buy in, it is critical that a strong vision is communicated that relates the importance of the system. Then individuals need to champion the change.

As this example illustrates, without clear communication and buy in, it doesn’t matter how good the system is if employees don’t know how to use it. Never under look the human component.


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