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Business Consulting and Change Management03/04/2019

Business projects, whether or not they involve IT systems, rarely fail for any technical reason: these days computer systems are ever more sophisticated and reliable. Generally projects are perceived to fail for a variety or reasons including: –

 

  • No perceived need to change
  • Project does not have clear scope or objectives
  • No shared vision of the outcome
  • No shared vision of the outcome
  • No champions of change in the business
  • Lack of staff involvement
  • Resistance to change is not overcome
  • Poor communication
  • Poor training
  • Stakeholder expectations are not managed
  • Outcomes/benefits not measured
  • Project not adequately governed
  • System functionality in adequate
  • Benefits not realised/no benefits
  • Only one bullet in the above list has anything to do with technology, the others are related to: –
    • Culture
    • People
    • Processes or
    • Organisation structures

 

Managing major business projects successfully is primarily about Managing Change. Change is difficult for everyone, harder for some than others. Change Management is a discipline in its own right which managers will rarely gain experience of through normal business activities. Nor is it something that can be handled on top of an otherwise full diary. It requires time, focus, capability and knowledge. Contrary to popular belief managing change in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) is even harder than in FTSE 100 companies.

 

Change Management Myths

   

Frequently we hear managers say one or all of the following: –

   

  • “People will always adapt to change”
  • “Our managers know how to manage change….it’s what we pay them to do”
  • “Our managers know how to manage change….it’s what we pay them to do”

   

But change does not “just happen”, it requires a solid framework that includes a plan and a process as well as skilled people to design, implement and anticipate the implications of that plan and process