You need to switch your change management thinking: here's how

20 September 2018 -

Change management In a widely-shared article, a leading management author has called on leaders to reconsider the way they action change management. According to the latest insights of Robert H Schaffer, managers should focus on creating change at all times.

“As an increasing number of people take on the role and mindset of the change management professional, [and] instead of striving to make innovation and improvement routine, they naturally encourage the treatment of change as something special,” writes Schaffer.

“What needs to change is that thinking. Leaders should view change not as an occasional disruptor, but as the very essence of the management job. Setting tough goals, establishing processes to reach them, carrying out those processes and carefully learning from them – these steps should characterise the unending daily life of the organisation at every level.”

Read more: the five greatest examples of change management in business history

In order to achieve such a revolution in working practices, Schaffer insists managers should focus on what needs to be accomplished within their organisations every day.

“Have teams carve out some sub-goals they will aim to achieve in a few months,” Schaffer advises. “They should be asked to test innovative steps they think will make a difference and to learn from the process.

“Maintaining a short timeframe for these experiments permits the rapid testing of many modest innovations. The emphasis should be on executing specific changes – with each success followed by a new round of more ambitious goals to tackle.”

Schaffer points out that if managers do not seek continual improvement, and instead see change as an extraordinary event, their organisations will struggle to keep pace with the volatility of the modern world.

The CMI offers a range of support and toolkits to help your organisation through change programmes.

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