Change management tools don’t work!

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The organisational development and change management sector is strewn with different models and each has their own strengths and weaknesses – but here at The Change Directors we know that one size does not fit all.

Not long ago, I had a conversation with a wonderful HRD who asked me if I had a preferred OD model. My answer was no. She was quite disappointed.

One model, one set of tools just won’t do – just like DIY – you need the correct tools and methods for the job.  You wouldn’t use a hammer to fix a screw? Change fails when businesses don’t look at the impact from the perspective of their customers, their employees and their suppliers.Change is continuous and it will constantly drive strategy so it’s more sensible to develop your own, bespoke change model that ensures continuous improvement, growth and transformation.

Our aim is always to build a model that matches the DNA of the organisation rather than try to shoehorn a particular favourite method into place. The reason for this is that the choice of methodologies depends on the way the organisation operates today, the foundations it was built up on and the culture, which was put in place by the entrepreneurs who set it up.

If you want to truly understand something, try to change it’. ~Kurt Lewin

Some change methods such as Prince 2 and ITIL have fallen out of the IT change industry and they don’t always reflect the more informal/human factors that affect change.   To get the right model for my client, I like to take a view of the following:

  1. The organisations strategic direction and plans.
  2. Technical and business know-how and levels of capability/fitness to deliver the future strategy.
  3. Who executes business operations and where.
  4. The foundations of the business – IT architecture, client base, regulators.
  5. And not forgetting leadership style, values, competences, culture and engagement.

There are normally a few areas where I can quickly gain an understanding of the culture.

  • The first is the way the organisation regards not just its customers, but also its employees, the local environment and community.
  • Secondly, whether a Regulator monitors it.
  • Thirdly at which level decisions are made.
  • Finally whether there is collaboration of ideas or guarded secrecy between divisions.

Once we have these in the bag, we can build a bespoke change model that matched the organisations specific needs, constraints and dependencies utilising a mix of the many models and tools available in the OD marketplace. We can also design in change competencies that will help in now and in the future. This results in the legacy of a change team who work in a consistent manner on the continuous improvement of the business and are well versed in how to manage change.

The ability to anticipate market changes and adapt to them will be the difference between failure and success for organisations in the future and as Albert Einstein said, ‘The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.’

Let’s change the way we think about organisational development and embed it in the organisation for good!

If you need any advice please do get in touch with the Change Directors by email or give Ruth a ring on 07976 509 551.

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