Steps To Effective Change Management

Change management is a complex process which varies according to each individual organization’s needs. There will be different approaches taken depending on a wide range of factors including the type of organisation, the change objectives and the external environment.

change road

However, there are 5 fundamental steps which need to  be part of any effective change management program.  These steps form the foundation for managing change.  The steps below provide insight into how to manage change effectively:

Step 1 – Build The Case For Change

The first step in any change management program is to establish the case for change. This provides the foundation for the whole change process. You know when you have done this successfully when team members can explain why they, and you, are implementing the changes.

Step 2 – Share The Vision And Values

Once you have established why change is necessary, the next stage is to communicate the vision for the future. What will the organization look like once the changes are implemented? How will things be improved? What are the positive benefits for the organization, team, individuals and customers?

Creating a set of values and sharing these in the early stages of the change process will help to prepare people for the impact of the change and make dealing with challenges and setbacks less problematic in the later stages.

Step 3 – Resources And Information

Change management programs need to be adequately resourced and effectively project managed in order to achieve their objectives. Resources include people, finance, facilities, IT, MI and many other elements. Change fails when these things have not been considered and change is not prioritized effectively or given the commitment it requires.

Step 4 – Management And Leadership Capability

Ensuring that managers and leaders possess the capability to manage change is crucial. It is important to consider the specific skills and behaviors which will be required from managers and leaders in order to direct and drive the change through the organization. Attending a good change management training course will equip people with the essential skills to implement and manage change well.

Step 5 – Communication

Good communication throughout every stage of the change process is vital to keep everyone informed and motivation levels high. The extent to which the change is effectively communicated will have a direct bearing on whether it succeeds or fails. Inevitably, change will involve delivering some difficult messages and these need to be communicated in an empathetic and supportive way.

Following these 5 fundamental steps will dramatically help you increase the chances of shaping and implementing your change management program successfully.

Change Photo via Shutterstock


Dale Kirke Dale Kirke works as a learning and development specialist at Thales Training and Consultancy focused on growing leadership skills development, building great teams and encouraging high performance. Dale has designed and delivered a range of learning and development solutions specialising in the areas of leadership and management, people and performance management, interpersonal skills and team development.

12 Reactions
  1. Great read, Dale! I think the last 2 are very important. There must be great leadership throughout the change process. Things can get messy at times, but having good leaders helps maintain control. Effective communication helps ensure everyone’s on the same page.

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. I would add the needs to celebrate the ‘new’ order – in much the same way as ceremonies are held to acknowledge leaving university, marriage and death; and the need to ensure continual focus on ‘baking-in’ the ‘new’ order so it becomes the ‘old’ order – and that includes enforcing the change, whether through example and encouragement (recommended and more likely to bring about change); or punishment/disciplinary action (less welcome coercion is more likely to fail, but sometimes necessary to make it happen)

  3. I think that change could be a good thing or bad that depending on the situation and business. My humane society has lots of changes everyday, and I have to make sure they are changed for the good of the customers and animals. I know that people don’t adjust to change very well but, sometimes it is very necessary at times. we as people can and will adjust to the change as long as you can make them comfortable and make them smile. This is the key to a good business.

  4. This is a very interesting thread but it talks very much about bringing people with you. What is suggested for sole traders or micro businesses that would benefit hugely from change management procedures but do not have people to engage or support them?

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