Managing Transitions

The pace of fundamental change is accelerating in the 21st Century. Multiple changes overlay the fundamental shifts. In the past, only senior managers had to worry about managing our understanding, acceptance and commitment to change. Because of the speed and volume of transitions, we all need to develop skills and strategies to cope.

Outcomes

  • Explore the nature of life cycles, change and transitions.
  • Appreciate the influence of your state and expectations during the transition on the outcome of the change.
  • Recognize the inevitable and predictable phases of transition experienced by all members of the organization; then implement the best strategies to keep yourself on the path.
  • Understand the human process of letting go, finding a sense of direction and control and starting over; how each personality type has different perceptions and needs during transition; then how to adapt to your individual needs.

Learnings

  • Know where your career, team and organization are in their life cycles; and how to respond strategically based on your analysis.
  • Recognize when a change is required, and the challenges presented by the transition period.
  • Explore the mythology of top-down cultural change driven by organizational hierarchy; and how cultural change really happens in the 21st century – by mobilising clarity and commitment throughout the organization.
  • Discover several models, methodologies, assessments and other tools.
  • Diagnose the phase of transition experienced by yourself, teams and organizations in the inevitable and predictable process they must navigate (Denial, Resistance, Exploration, Commitment); then choose the precise strategy to respond to your present state.
  • Use the change process (Endings – Neutral Zone – New Beginnings) to help your team and individual employees manage each phase well.
  • Make a plan to help yourself through the ambiguity and confusion of the Neutral Zone, adapting the methodology to your personality.

Outline

Preparation

Assessment & Pre-reading
In order to accelerate the process of learning and applying the skills and strategies, and save valuable workshop time, participants may wish to complete some of the following assessments prior to the workshop:

  • “Managing the Change Curve”
  • “Transition: The Personal Path Through Change”

Pre-workshop Questionnaire or Interviews
Pre-workshop questionnaires and/or interviews can be adapted to the precise needs of your team and organization. They will allow the facilitator to adapt the workshop to particular needs; and, surface and address the most important issues.

Challenges and outcomes

  • Identify the challenges in managing change they wish to address.
  • Agree on the outcomes for the workshop.

The nature of change

  • Explore how life cycles work, why life cycles are faster than before, why change is difficult and why most organizations fail.
  • Compare the mythology of top-down driven change and the reality of mobilising grassroots clarity and commitment.
  • Explore the benefits of being available to new ways of doing things and the consequences of playing it too safe.
  • Examine the impact of change on stress, burnout, organizational relevance and productivity.

State, expectations and self-fulfilling prophecies

  • Recognize how state, attitude and expectations generate self-fulfilling prophecies in the results of the change and change process.
  • Explore how you unconsciously communicate your expectations to others to influence them positively or negatively.
  • Use four practical techniques to manage state and expectations.
  • Apply an approach to communicate positive expectations to others.

The process of change: Response

  • Identify the symptoms of each of the inevitable phases of the change process (Denial – Resistance – Exploration – Commitment) of the organization, team, and yourself.
  • Choose the appropriate strategy to help move yourself, your employees and your organization from one phase to the next.

Personal transition strategies

  • Develop a personalized plan to deal with Endings, the ambiguity and confusion of the Neutral Zone and clarify a New Beginning by:
    • Taking stock of where you are in your change process, including “What happens if I do nothing?”
    • Considering what they may be losing, the impact of those losses, what to let go of and how to let go.
    • Build a plan to create a new sense of direction by regaining a sense of control, clarify what you need to understand, get the support you require, and define/refine a new sense of purpose.
  • Adopt the transition plan to the personality of each individual. Since each personality type requires a different plan due to their perception of change – the kind of environment in which they work best and their perceived ability to influence changes and the course of transition.

Getting unstuck

  • By way of a powerful metaphor, explore why people get stuck in the change process; then strategies to get “unstuck”.

Plan

  • Develop a plan to manage personal and professional transitions.