Change Management Process: the steps for successful change
The Change Management process is the sequence of steps or activities a change management team or a project leader must take in order to manage individual transitions and ensure project success.
The 3-phase process of Change Management
The Change Management process was introduced by Prosci® in 2002, after their third Change Management research, where the key elements of process were identified by Prosci® among the insights and experiences provided by the participants.
Phase 1 – Preparing for change
Identify anticipated points of resistance and special tactics based on readiness assessments.
The first phase guides change and projects teams improve awareness and define their plan by answering preliminary questions such as how much Change Management is needed for the project, who is impacted by the initiative and how, who are the sponsors.
The first phase of the Change Management process provide a 360-degree view of the teams impacted, possible sponsors and tactics to get them on board, the evaluation of the change effort. The outputs of this phase are:
- Change characteristics profile
- Organisational attributes profile
- Change Management team structure
- Sponsor assessment, structure and roles
- Impact assessment
- Change Management strategy
Phase 2 – Managing change
“Resistance management plan” is one of the five plans created as a deliverable.
This phase involves the creation of five Change Management plans that define the steps practitioners will have to take to support individual change through the ADKAR™ Model.
The Communication Plan defines the key messages for the impacted audiences, who will send these messages and who will receive them according to the sender’s credibility with a specific group of recipients.
The Sponsor Roadmap is issued for the primary sponsors and the coalition of sponsors and it outlines actions and communications to help executives be active sponsors of the change initiative.
The Training Plan helps people build the knowledge and ability they need to adopt the change; the Coaching Plan is prepared for managers and leaders who will have to lead the change with their teams.
The Resistance Management Plan addresses resistance at its initial stages and throughout the whole project, because it includes the strategies, the process and plan that are necessary to identify, understand and address resistance at any stage.
Phase 3 – Reinforcing change
Collect feedback, audit compliance, diagnose and address gaps, look for pockets of resistance.
The Reinforcement phase is where project and change teams measure whether the change is being adopted and employees are performing their activities the new way, and work to detect gaps and celebrate success.
The third phase of the Change Management Process includes measuring changes in behaviour, corrective action plans, reinforcement mechanisms, individual and group recognition approaches, success celebrations and an after-action review.
Find out more about this topic in our Big Theme What is Change Management?