Better Change Management — Your 4-Step Checklist

Better Change Management — Your 4-Step Checklist
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Better Change Management Is Notoriously Hard
Because change is so constant, you’d think we’d all have “better change management” skills and results by now. But by its very nature, behavioral change is hard to achieve.

We know from our change management simulation data that employees are apt to cling to the “tried and true” ways of getting things done and to resist new challenges where knowledge and skill gaps can be exposed and mistakes undoubtedly will be made.

4 Steps to Better Change Management
To help you along the way to achieving the desired changes in your business, here is a change management checklist compiled by proven change management consultants that you can follow.

Step-by-step, it will lead you through the change process, improve your chances of beating the odds, and guide you toward success.

  1. Establishing the Greater Reason Why
    The very first step requires that you clearly know why the change is fundamentally necessary. Be able to (simply and in a compelling way) articulate the critical few reasons the organization needs to change.In other words, co-create an urgent business case for change in a way that speaks to the hearts and minds of those affected by change at an individual, team, and organizational level.
  2. Predicting Challenges
    Try to foresee change obstacles you may face. Consider who will struggle the most with the proposed changes.•  What will employees have to give up and what will they gain?— Will there be trust issues that could impede the change process?

    — Will new skills be needed and how soon?

    — What is the urgency around affecting the change plan?

    — Who has the potential to become either change champions or opponents of the change and how will they influence others?

  3. Planning the Change Communication
    Now it’s time to present the clear and compelling case for change to employees. The challenge is to explain why the change is happening in a way that will help them to see that it is in their best interest to support the desired change.

    Make sure you can describe a desirable end state that is compelling and clear.  Paint the picture in a way that everyone can envision success.  Set up a change communication program that regularly checks in to see that the rationale for change is fully understood and, if not fully accepted, be open to answer questions and allay concerns.

  4. Making Change Work
    You will need processes, practices, and systems in place to support the change process before you begin.

    — Have learning and development opportunities ready for those who need new knowledge and skills.

    — Design change success metrics to measure progress toward the desired state.

    — Check in with front-line managers frequently to see that they, in turn, are checking with their teams to measure and encourage the desired behaviors.

    — Discover and manage pockets of resistance to change.

    — Ensure open and transparent two-way communication (questions, answers, frank discussions, thoughtful challenges) to motivate, support, and bring employees on board.

    — Be ready and open to course correct as lessons are learned.

The Bottom Line
This is your chance to make change a natural part of how you do business.  Leaders and businesses that can accommodate and adjust to rapid change in a way that makes sense will outperform their peers.  Are you ready?

To learn more about better change management, download Lessons from the Field – How to Mobilize, Design and Transform Your Next Change Initiative

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