In today's business world, digital transformation is essential for organizations to stay competitive. Employees must be able to adapt to new technologies and processes quickly and easily. Unfortunately, this is not always easy, and employees can often resist change. This is where change management processes comes in.
In this blog you will find:
This month, our blog post will dig deeper into organizational change management and digital transformation. The focus will be on our version of the Kubler-Ross Change Curve which talks about how your organization can manage change at scale.
It's important to understand that there are different points in this journey when your organization is going through such change.
First, the blog post will mention the importance of change management to your organization’s digital transformation journey. Next, the post will talk about the first half of the curve below (3 points) and highlight what organizations experience at each point as well as what you can do to help guide your organization further down the change curve.
5 Reasons Why You Need Change Management for Your Organization’s Digital Transformation Journey
What is change management?
Change management is the process of planning, implementing, and monitoring changes to an organization's employees, processes and technologies. It helps employees understand and accept the changes that are happening, making the transition smoother and more successful.
Change management is critical to an organization's digital transformation journey for several reasons:
🌐 Employees are the backbone of any organization, and they need to be brought into the change in order for it to be successful.
🎯 Change management helps to ensure that the organization's goals and objectives are met in a timely and effective manner.
🚊 Digital transformation is a process, not an event, and change management helps to keep the process on track.
📋 Change management helps to identify and mitigate risks associated with the digital transformation journey.
🧑🤝🧑Change management ensures that employees are properly trained and equipped to handle the changes associated with the digital transformation journey.
In short, change management processes are essential for any organization undergoing digital transformation. Without it, employees will likely resist the changes, slowing down or even halting the transformation process. With it, employees can be more easily embrace the proposed changes, leading to a successful digital transformation.
First 3 Stages of the Change Management Curve
Below are the first 3 stages in change management for your organization’s digital transformation journey:
Stage #1. The beginning of change (Surprise! Kind of fun!)
The first stage is when your organization gets up to the top of the first curve, some new change is about to be introduced into your organization and really, this is this is the fun part. This is the best part, the ideation stage.
This is really an exciting moment when your organization is involving a lot of people in the upcoming change. It tends to be an opportunity for teams to come together and say “OK, awesome! Here's what we're going to work towards”. There is a lot of excitement in the air.
The key is to channel that excitement towards departmental or organizational alignment around what your organization is going to achieve with the proposed change. This will help your organization to progress along the curve in a collaborative manner.
Stage #2. When change gets difficult (It’s Difficult!)
Right after Stage #1 is when the work really starts to happen, and the organization starts to realize that (depending on how significant the change will be) it's going to be hard. There are going to be challenges and it's going to require a lot of work.
When your employees begin to realize how difficult or how significant the change is going to be, that’s really when your organization must make sure that it sends out the right communications to its workforce. Your organization must make sure that it is talking to employees about what is happening, reinforcing the alignment statements or what your organization is trying to achieve and spend time on training.
The key is to use education and training to aid employees in taking one step after another on their digital transformation journey. Education and training are vital components of any kind of formal change management strategy. If your organization foregoes bringing its people into the change process, helping them understand what's going on and training them on what's to come, there is going to be a lot more resistance than anticipated.
Stage #3. Back to the old way of doing things (Reliance on the Old)
At this stage, your organization gets to the bottom of the valley (so to speak) when employees start to say: “You know what, this is just too hard. I want to go back to the way I was doing things before. It wasn’t that bad”. You are going to see a lot of people just begin to drift back to their old ways of doing things because those ways are familiar even if they're not as efficient or effective as the proposed change.
Traditionally, people don't like change and so they can easily slip back into their old work habits. This is where your organization needs to spark their motivation to continue along the digital transformation journey. There are different ways to do this and some of it will depend on the work culture of your business. Below are a few ideas:
- Create prizes or contests (team or individual) linked to the proposed digital transformation
- Build internal social momentum through employee recognition linked to the proposed digital transformation
- Continue to highlight the benefits to the individuals when they stick to the new change
- Create team centric goals connected to the proposed digital transformation
- Consider gamifying some element of the change management plan to engage employees
There's a lot to unpack here and think about regarding change management and digital transformation.
Our next blog post will talk about how to continue pushing through the largest pain points and getting to the other side of the curve where the world is better than it was.
To learn more from our CTO, watch this video:
If your organization is considering or in the midst of a digital transformation journey, it's important to have change management as part of that process. Change management processes will help ensure a successful transition and implementation by mitigating risks, providing clear communication, and handling resistance.
This is part 1 of our Change Management blog series. Check out part 2 in this blog:
Need help with your organization's digital transformation journey? Chat with us today and see how we can help you navigate this crucial process.