By Jane Sparrow
Even before COVID-19, change management was big on the agenda – whether that was Brexit, climate change or the fluctuating worldwide economies. The pandemic then presented a change challenge not seen for 100 years that drove individual, organisational and societal change on an unprecedented scale. In a context we have never seen before, involving uncertainty of a whole new kind and a public health priority unique for most of our lifetimes – how can we manage change in a completely changed world?
A little while ago we identified five stages of change in relation to the pandemic and the future of work. Lockdown was tough, after which we all worked furiously through the learning and development phase to carve out what the future of our business would look like.
As we now live through the transition, reconnection and transformation stages, there is no business, sector or industry that is exempt from the challenge of managing significant change around the who, what, when, where and how of the way they do business. For some, it’s positive and is focused on evolution and growth. For others, it’s more challenging and is centred around downsizing or restructuring.
What needs to change about how we manage change?
In a context we have never seen before, can the old approaches to managing change be effective? What needs to change, about how we manage change, in order to navigate to the ‘next normal’ and rebuild business, commerce and society?
We think there’s six key areas that organisations and leaders need to be thinking about in how they manage change in our changed world.