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Developing and maintaining an open stance towards change is vital for any organisation. Acceptance of the inevitability of change allows us to meet the ever-changing needs of our stakeholders, while maintaining a commitment to continual improvement.

With change comes greater insight, personal and organisational growth, and a clarity of purpose. Sometimes these benefits can be hard to acknowledge when a multitude of changes are required or when change feels imposed on us due to economic factors, external regulations or compliance obligations – not to mention the strategic plans we internally put in place every couple of years.

As much as we may not like to acknowledge it, the default response of people toward change is one of fear for what they may be losing, combined with a resistance toward managing things in new ways. If change management isn’t handled with care, there is every likelihood that before too long team members will, in fact, revert to the ‘old way’ of doing things, preferring the comfort and normalcy of the past to the uncertainty, temporary discomfort and hard work of implementing and sticking with change.

Leaders can improve their chances of effectively implementing change through their consideration of a change management framework, such as Kotter’s Eight Step Framework for Managing Change. A framework such as this provides teams with an empowering and easy to follow roadmap for the navigation of change in their teams, even when they might not be change management experts themselves. Importantly, at the points where people may have a likelihood to feel overwhelmed with their own responses to change, a Change Management Framework helps to diffuse emotions, establish common ground and drive constructive dialogue between team members.

When considering Kotter’s Eight Step Framework for Managing Change it can be helpful to consider a circular or elliptical image. Change makers work their way through each phase of change with the awareness that they may need to revisit key steps throughout the process.

When leaders of change understand the importance of the initial steps in this framework they can often reflect back on stressful or unsuccessful change initiatives from the past and make the realisation for why these did not succeed. Prioritising the celebration of wins and the delegation of key actions along the way serves to gain momentum in the change process, while the final stages of the framework emphasise the importance of embedding and reinforcing the new behaviours for maximum success.

It is important to remember that real change takes a very long time, particularly when people have the propensity to return to their old ways of working. Leaders can use this framework to consider where further strengthening of the change making process may be warranted, repeating some of the key steps along the way.

If you would like to learn more about how Be Challenged can assist your organisation to manage change effectively, please get in touch.

We look forward to speaking with you soon!


Kingsley Seale

Joint Managing Director, Be Challenged

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