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Project management must go together with change management to structurally achieve business objectives

Organisations do not change, but the people within them do. Project management can, therefore, only succeed if sufficient attention is given to the human side of change.

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Effective project management

Organisations are increasingly going project-based. However, many projects that people start are incomplete or do not lead to the intended result. Whereas project management focuses on designing, developing and delivering improvement concepts, change management focuses on the human side of change. It provides the processes, tools and techniques to guide people through the change process. Monitoring a large proportion of Fortune 500 companies shows that projects where change management is well designed are six times more effective in achieving an objective.


Don't neglect the human side

Indeed, when the human side is neglected in major change projects, we often see obstacles arise. This manifests itself in lower productivity, active and passive resistance, negative publicity, loss of valuable employees, and incomplete or incorrect application of new processes, systems, and tools. Then, everything may be technically perfectly set up, but the desired change does not materialise because it is not used to its full potential.


Human factors

Once a project that involves significant change is launched, and this is usually the case, its chances of success are much higher if it is accompanied by good change management. This takes into account three human factors necessary for successful implementation. These are ´speed of adoption´(how quickly you get employees on board), ´final use´(number of employees using the new processes and techniques) and ´competence´(how effective the employees are after the change). Change management sees to it that these three factors are scored better.


Structured approach

It is, first, essential to adopt a structured approach for successful change management. We use Prosci's ADKAR methodology for this purpose. ADKAR is based on scientific research and is the global standard for change management. ADKAR represents the steps that must be taken to guide the human side of change: Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability and Reinforcement. These steps must be taken correctly: there is no point in sending people to training if they do not want to go along with the change or do not see the need for it. Only when the right motivation is present can the knowledge and ability to convert it into actions be worked on. Through regular assessments, you can measure which stage of the change process a particular group or team is in. The last point is to work on ensuring that the changes are secured and people do not quickly fall back into their old behaviour and habits.


Bespoke

Because change management involves the human side of change, tailor-made individual coaching is essential. People must say goodbye to an old situation and get used to a new working method or position. Everyone handles this differently and requires more or less time and support. The success of a change process partly depends on how people are guided through the resulting emotion and change curve. Initial resistance can also be reduced by giving special attention to an individual or group and developing a common language.


Sponsorship, engagement and support

Management must not only announce the change itself and clearly explain why it is needed but also actively and visibly participate in the change process. This sponsorship requires support in word and deed and managing any resistance within the organisation.
The responsibility for leading the change process is best placed with middle management as much as possible. After all, successful change starts there but can also get bogged down there. It is good to realise that middle management is often too busy with day-to-day operations to implement changes properly. Therefore, Good support from experienced (external) change managers and the proper training and tools are needed, as well as explicit support from the management: they must clearly show that the change is a priority and help solve any operational bottlenecks.


Boer & Croon leads the change process in the right direction

We enable clients to implement change effectively. We initiate and supervise complete transformation projects or take on change management only, working with the client's project team. We do not leave until the change is secured throughout the organisation. That is our promise: we get it done!