Change management does not have a one-size fits all solution. It’s almost like a flu. If two friends or work colleagues each catch a flu at the same time and with the same symptoms, it is quite likely that if they visit a pharmacy, they will be given different prescriptions.
Why is this? Because of their individual health composition. Each has a unique tolerance to the virus or bacteria and they react to medicine differently.
Businesses also have that unique individuality because of the people in it. In fact, it is said that while businesses may be easily duplicated at every front, the one thing that cannot be copied is the working culture which finds its footing in the people who work there.
Over time I have found that change management in different organisations, large or small, takes various formats of implementation but there is a similarity in one thing.
At every stage of change, there was a ‘zoom in’ and ‘zoom out’ effect that allowed change teams to constantly review their progress and move on towards the next phase. It was almost like drawing a 6-point star.
The six external points of the star refer to the zoom outs and the internal ones indicate a zooming in. When you zoom out, you are having a bird’s eye view of the assignment or project. Zooming in means that you are working on the more intricate details of the plan.
The six points of the star focus approach are:
Planning allows you to:
- identify the goals and objectives you are working to achieve
- set the timelines by which the focus points should be realized
- identify and allocate the required resources
- agree on the key performance indicators, and the measuring tools/ actions
- setup a follow-up and feedback process
- breakdown the main focus areas into manageable chunks
This is about implementing your plan. Putting deliberate effort towards achieving the plan.
Evaluation is a two-part process. Part one is done while the action plan is being implemented and part two is at the end of the process.
Evaluating means that we are looking out for the results we are targeting using defined indicators, metrics and milestones.
If after evaluation you discover that one (or several) of your actions is complicating your processes or resulting in duplication of tasks, customer inconvenience, reduction of value proposition, etc, seek and implement an alternative way of doing things. That is correction.
Alignment is about synchronizing the new and old working ways to ensure that they are working together for the alignment is about synchronizing the new and old working ways to ensure that they are working together for the greater good of the business.
Embedding builds upon alignment. It is achieved by continuous repetition until the successful turnaround activities are seen as part of the whole.
I invite you to apply this star focus framework in your next new or change initiative then share with me on the comments section what your experience is.
More details about the Star Focus Framework are in my book Strategic Business Turnaround: Basic, Strategic & Practical Steps to Getting Your Business Profitable Again available on Amazon