Initiating and managing change can be a complex and challenging task, as it requires not only the implementation of new ideas, behaviours, or ways of doing things but also the engagement and buy-in of all stakeholders involved. Change management models provide a framework for understanding and navigating this process and can help organisations achieve successful and sustainable change.
Change management models
Change management models are frameworks or approaches organisations can use to help plan and implement changes effectively. There are many different change management models, but some of the most commonly used ones include the following:
Lewin’s Change Management Model
This model, also known as the “unfreeze-change-refreeze” model, proposes that change occurs in three stages: unfreezing (preparing for a change), changing (implementing the change), and refreezing (consolidating the change).
Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model
This model, developed by John Kotter, proposes that successful change requires a sense of urgency, a guiding coalition, a vision, a strategy, and the ability to communicate and execute the change effectively.
The ADKAR model, developed by Prosci, is a goal-oriented model that helps organisations understand and manage the individual changes necessary for successful organisational change. It focuses on five key elements: awareness, desire, knowledge, ability, and reinforcement.
McKinsey 7-S Model
This model, developed by McKinsey & Company, suggests that successful organisational change requires alignment across seven interdependent elements: strategy, structure, systems, skills, style, staff, and shared values.
Bridges’ Transition Model: This model, developed by William Bridges, focuses on the psychological aspects of change and proposes that individuals go through three stages of transition during the change process: ending, losing, and letting go of the old way of doing things; the neutral zone, where individuals are in limbo and may feel disoriented; and the new beginning, where individuals adopt the new way of doing things.
These are just a few examples of change management models. Organisations may use a single model or combine elements from multiple models to create a customised approach to change management.
Continuous Improvement Process (CIP)
The Continuous Improvement Process (CIP) is a systematic approach to identifying and addressing areas for improvement within an organisation. It involves continuously identifying opportunities for improvement, implementing changes, and evaluating the results to ensure that the changes are effective.
The CIP typically follows a cycle, often referred to as the “Plan-Do-Check-Act” (PDCA) cycle, which consists of four steps:
- Plan: Identify an opportunity for improvement and develop a plan to address it.
- Do: Implement the plan and collect data to assess its effectiveness.
- Check: Analyse the data to determine the impact of the changes and identify any issues that need to be addressed.
- Act: Make any necessary adjustments to the plan and continue the improvement cycle.
The CIP is often used in conjunction with other process improvement methods, such as Lean or Six Sigma, which also follow a structured approach to identifying and addressing areas for improvement.
The CIP is valuable for organisations because it helps them identify and systematically address problems or inefficiencies, leading to improved quality, increased productivity, and reduced costs. It is also a proactive approach that encourages ongoing improvement rather than waiting for problems to occur before addressing them.