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IVAN SCHMIDT

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Managing change in organisations: the role of project management

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Managing change in organisations: the role of project management

“When you can’t change the direction of the wind — adjust your sails”
-- H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Change is scary. Everything changes.
Both these arguments are correct, and lead to a conclusion when thought in relation to organisation management:
Change is natural and should be embraced.

Some of the main reasons that might bring the need for organisational change in for profit business are:
"Competition, need for process improvement / new technology, adapting to new laws / regulations, taking advantage of new opportunities, etc."

When we talk about NGOs we to these reasons we might want to add:
"Increase/reduction of available funds, new needs emerging in target community/population, change in leadership (NGOs usually have a very fast turnover between its employee)."

NGOs or for profit business will face one main and common issue when trying to implement changes in their organisation:
Resistance to change (be it from employee, customers or target community)

So, what is the right way to face/embrace change in an organisation?


First and foremost understand how your organisation will react to the change you are about to implement. There is a great tool available for doing so, and is the Beachhard and Gleicher’s Formula:


D x V x F > R = ∆

Where:
D – Signifies the degree of dissatisfaction with the current situation
V – The vision of what can be done and what is possible.
F – A plan of the first concrete steps that can be taken towards materialising the vision.
R – The resistance to change.
∆ (delta) – The change.


"This formula for change suggests that a successful organisational change is possible only when the product of D, V and F, is greater than the resistance to change."

Secondly, once you evaluated the amount of resistance you will be facing and have decided it is worth to implement the change, manage change using a Project Management Approach:

Using a Project management approach to manage the dynamics involved with every organisational change, will help you:

setting the right goals to measure the success of the change implementation
plan and schedule actions
monitor and evaluate
the change process,
"Change is hard because people overestimate the value of what they have - and underestimate the value of what they may gain by giving that up." -- James Belasco and Ralph Stayer, Flight of the Buffalo (1994)


If you wish to read more from me:
Remote Project Management: the 4 most important lessons.
What the real mission of every NGO should be, and it has everything to do with communication.
Solidarity : a moral value, a legal principle, a political option, or merely a rhetorical device?
Donating VS Investing or better donations as a form of investment?
NGOs' potential as to positively impact the efficacy of public institutions and initiatives.
Resilience in the Non-profit World
Begin With the End in Mind
1600km solo riding across Europe : career lessons
Supporting an educational program in Tanzania. Transferring knowledge through continents.
Being a Field Consultant. Promoting Socially Positive Products in Rural Areas of Guatemala.
PM life : Lessons Learned Leading a Construction Project in Guatemala
There is always something new to learn out there