The thing I’m rapidly discovering is that managing change on a project is very similar to managing change in your life. The reality is that any change is unsettling and any change needs to follow the same rules
- You can’t make people accept changes.
- You can’t ‘sell’ them on the idea of change as a way of accelerating 'agreement' and acceptance.
- People affected by the change need to agree to the changes, or at least understand why the changes are happening
- Those affected need to be involved in the planning of the change
- Face-to-face communications are needed to handle sensitive aspects, don't rely on phone, text message or email
- Quick change prevents proper understanding and involvement, which leads to difficulties that take time to resolve. Does change really need to happen immediately, or can time be taken to plan?
Can you think of a major change in your life which the above rules would apply to? Think of a house move which affects the whole family, or a change to family dynamics – marriage break up or a new baby.
Sometimes the changes are necessary and unavoidable, but involving those affected in the decisions must surely assist in limiting the impact. It won’t remove the pain of change but it will improve the situation by removing some of the uncertainty and fear.
Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts. ~ Arnold Bennett