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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Book Review: Change Management

A 94 page manifesto on how to manage change in an organization and I would recommend all management professionals should have this book in their desk reference books. People and organizations naturally resist change and having the proper tools within reach to identify and manage through this resistance will enable you to bring your the organization to the next level. Adding the additional 54 pages of appendices including tools and worksheets to speed your implementation and this book becomes a complete tool set.

Jeffrey Hiatt has written two additional books on change, ADKAR and Employee’s Survival Guide to Change. Both of these books build upon the ADKAR model introduced in Change Management: Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability, and Reinforcement. Jeffrey Hiatt and Timothy Greasey make the case that this model is applicable to both personal and organizational changes and when used properly will allow for the process of change to happen; carefully laying out the case that “as individuals we, experience change differently, we go through change in stages”. From my personal experiences change is never an easy process to manage especially when dealing with tight deadlines; some classroom training in the ADKAR model will enhance the benefit of this book.

The authors have broken down the change process into 7 basic principles:

Principal 1 – Senders and receivers
Principal 2 – Resistance and comfort
Principal 3 – Authority for change
Principal 4 – Value systems
Principal 5 – Incremental versus radical change
Principal 6 – The right answer is not enough
Principal 7 – Change is a process

Each principal is demonstrated to bring you back to the ADKAR model. I have taught change management extensively to business managers, project managers, and analysts and when ADKAR was effectively applied the result was consistent success. Yes the material is a bit text book but the purpose is to provide a quick desk reference tool and if your organization wants to be effective in a challenging global environment the books simple layout provides quick access the keys elements for managing change.

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