Many companies staff skilled Project Managers on projects yet miss the boat on staffing projects with skilled Change Managers. Organizational Change Management skills are complimentary but different than Project Management skills. Change managers focus on communication, engagement, transition, support and reinforcement strategies. You need someone on your team with change management skills if…
1) Leaders aren’t visibly supporting your project. People watch
what leaders do and say and then filter that information to figure out if they should support a change or not. Talking the talk is useless if walking the walk doesn’t follow. During times of major change, leaders are watched with even more scrutiny than usual. I don’t want to make leaders paranoid but they usually underestimate how much importance is placed on even one action. Importance can even be placed on inaction. For example, not showing up to participate in a meeting sends a signal to those attending.
When leaders are aligned and supportive of a change, there is success.
When leaders are not aligned and supportive, there is failure (“Best
Practices in Change Management,” Prosci 2002, 2005). Change Managers coach
leaders on their role. They provide direction, recommend actions and even write
leadership talking points. The Change manager connects the project to the
leaders in a way that influences others to support the change.
If your leadership is not visibly supporting your project, you need to add someone with change management skills to your team.
To be continued…