Building a Foundation for Change: Why So Many Changes Fail and What to Do About It

A surprisingly high percentage of organizational changes are doomed to fail. According to recent surveys, reengineering efforts have about a 33 percent chance of success, mergers and acquisitions succeed 29 percent of the time, quality improvement efforts achieve their goals half the time, and new software applications hit the mark in less than 20 percent of the cases.

What often goes wrong: Bright people develop a plan that includes a sound business reason for the change. The objectives are clear. The plan includes time lines, bud­gets and staffing requirements. The plan seems on target. And, the plan is good — as far as it goes. But, it’s what is not in the plan that creates problems. What most plans lack are strategies for building sup­port for the change.

Download PDF: Building a Foundation for Change: Why So Many Changes Fail and What to Do About It

Exploring Alternatives to Downsizing

Market pressures force organizations to change rapidly. Given this unrelenting pace, leaders find they no longer can mull over decisions before taking action. Organizations must be nimble in considering and acting on changing needs in staffing. Leaders must ask:

  • What mix of skills do we need today?
  • What skills are we likely to need in the future?
  • Do we have the right number of people employed today?
  • How will these numbers change in the future?
  • How do our staffing costs compare to others in out type of business?

Download PDF: Exploring Alternatives to Downsizing

The Cycle of Change

Resistance to change often appears when people are at different points on the cycle. Take the time to compare the relative positions on the cycle held by everyone involved; it can help you anticipate potential problems and develop the most appropriate strategies.

The richness of the cycle comes in the potential tension between your position on the cycle and others’. I will write as if there were only one other group, so you will be looking at only two points on the cycle — where you are and where they are. Actually, there are probably many different groups, each with its own interests and position on your cycle. To thoroughly understand the situation, you would need to complete this quick assessment with each of the other key individuals or groups.

Download PDF: The Cycle of Change


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