It is the question we hear SO often… “What exactly is change management?” (We are not talking about the technical kind of change control/change management/version control… we are talking about organizational change management – ie. the poeple/fuzzy stuff!).
Change Management is, quite simply, getting people ready, willing and able to work in new ways.
Organizations are really just groups of people. And an organization changes when the people within that organization change. So if an organization hopes to change its outputs by changing the way the organization works, then fundamentally people need to make that change happen.
The challenge arises from the basic fact that change is not easy for people… it is just the way that human beings were engineered. But given the proper time and attention, people can survive and thrive in changing environments.
People are ready when they know what the change is, why it is happening, and how it will take place/the implications of it. They are willing when they make a conscious choice to be a part of the future state (not when they are forced! forcing people sucks productivity down the drain!). And they are able when they have the tools and skills necessary to work in new ways.
By being thoughtful and rigorous, we can give people the information, leadership, measures and rewards, training, and other things they need to be ready, willing and able to make a change reality.