Change is in the Air: 3 Core Components of a Change Strategy

Autumn Leaves.jpg

During this time of year, the leaves aren’t the only things that are changing. As we prepare for the end of year and the changes that often take place during Q1, it is important to remember that a change strategy plan is a critical component of any change effort.

Clear roles need to be assigned to minimize redundancy, and to ensure that all responsibilities are covered.  However, all too often, roles are assigned based on availability rather than who is the most competent and best positioned. This may result in a poor fit for the role, and a less than-successful outcome. Below are a few leadership and team roles you’ll want to include during your planning stage.

  • Change Process Leader

    – normally a senior executive, authority directly from those who have sponsored the change effort. Responsibilities include;

    • Facilitating the process of defining, planning, and correcting the strategy and process.
    • Clarifying scope, outcomes, pace, conditions for success and constraints.
    • Setting parameters and allocating resources.
    • Advocating and integrating change initiatives and securing resources.
    • Overseeing communication, information generation, and course correction.
    • Modeling mindset and behavioral changes along with other leaders.
    • Providing feedback and coaching to all change leaders and stakeholders.
    • Directing the change leadership team and the change project team.
    • Updating the executive team.
  • Executive Team– involved in the change management process. Responsibilities include; 
    • Supporting desired outcomes of the change at a vision, strategy, and behavioral level.
    • Running the business and buffering the change effort from organizational constraints.
    • Making strategic decisions as negotiated with the sponsor (or delegate this responsibility accordingly to change leadership team).
    • Participating in designing change strategy and desired state.
  • Change Leadership Team – group of leaders and key stakeholders with delegated authority to shape outcomes and change process. (may be the same as executive team) Responsibilities include;
    • Focus on vision, strategy, and planning of change activities.
    • Assure adequate resources.
    • Direct and guide communications and course correction during the change effort.

While other teams or directors may be necessary for your change management project, these three are critical to your success. This stage of planning may take more time than others. However, ensuring you have capable, competent, willing team players assigned to each role will have a tremendous impact on the victory of your change effort.