Project Management

Change Management: Understanding Perspectives

PMI Northern Alberta Chapter

Craig is based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada and has worked with for the last six years developing the various HEADWAY processes (Project, Change and Portfolio). He has hosted a series of webinars and is a business intelligence subject matter expert.

Earlier this year, I was working on a project to assist a large company to improve a series of financial processes. The existing processes involved two key stakeholder groups: operations and business supports. And neither of the groups had an altogether positive perception of the other.

However, to ensure the lasting success of the process changes, it was critical that these two groups spoke directly to one another. In a meeting with the operations group to define some of the inputs and outputs of one of the processes, I asked the question, "Who from Business Supports should be part of this conversation?" The response was quick and left no room for misinterpretation: "Why do they need to be sitting at this table? We will tell them what they need to do."

Let me be clear, the statement was not made with malicious intent. It was a clear statement of the speaker's perception and is all too common on change projects heading in the wrong direction. Destination: Failure. This statement perfectly sums up the need for change management on projects.

Change management is about understanding how the change that the project will bring will impact the people in the business both directly and indirectly. Some projects will bring massive, whole-scale change. Others will bring little if any noticeable change to most stakeholders. However, it is important …

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