Practical Methods for Successful Change Adoption

PMI Minnesota Chapter

Most of us know that change adoption is a key to project success. But what are the elements that can ensure a successful project adoption? What are some basic tactics that can be used to help make sure that stakeholders and in-the-trenches users have the best attitude possible to make the change and spread the news to their colleagues?

How Complex?
First, determine how large the change is. How much of an impact will the project have on the culture of the organization?  Are you asking your organization to take on a change they are ready to make? Then the planning, communication, and time spent on selling the project can be scaled back. If this is a change that will impact the entire organization, and the project has been attempted before and failed—but it still must go forward and many are against it—then you have a much more challenging task of selling the idea and keeping stakeholders and end users updated (and positive) throughout the project. Plan for extra communication at a lot of levels, roundtables to talk about their requirements, forums to have users test drive the solution, and more stakeholders—and even bring on some that may not be in favor of the project.  

Figure 1: Change adoption complexity.

Listen to the Users, It Will Be Worth It 
Everyone wants to be heard. That is no different when you are in charge of …

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"Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper."

- Robert Frost