Even ‘Change Management’ Is Changing

Executive Briefing | by | November 13, 2017


Monica E. Oss
Monica E. Oss

Last week, our team was in full “tech immersion” at The 2017 OPEN MINDS Technology & Informatics Institute. But my big takeaway was less about the technology itself and more about changing how organizations use data for competitive advantage and reduce the cost of service delivery (see Connecting The Dots—Sustainability & Tech Leverage).

For me, this is a question of strategy and of culture – which boils down to two questions: How do you plan for managing in a data-responsive environment (see 3 Steps To Competing On Performance and Making Your Clinical Team Data Driven)? And how do you embrace re-engineering service lines using technology to increase value (see The Performance Competency & Culture Gap In Non-Profit Management Teams and Why Unit Costs Matter & What To Do About It).

These are significant changes in both process and culture for many health and human service organizations. We have written before about the culture change and change management tools required for organizations to thrive in a tech-enabled field, including Don’t Implement Tech In A Bubble: Consider Your Strategy and Tech Best Practice: Planning, Budgeting & Change Management.

But, just when I thought we had our arms around the change management process, I read a thought-provoking piece in the Harvard Business Review, Change Management Is Becoming Increasingly Data-Driven. Companies Aren’t Ready. The authors’ key premise—change management will increasingly be based on data and predictive models. And, while the reality of data-driven change management is not here yet, the authors recommended five ways that organizations can prepare for the future of “best practice” in change management.

Start using digital engagement tools—Many health and human service leaders are just getting used to the idea of real-time consumer feedback. But the tech infrastructure that supports that level of data collection and use can also be applied to employee engagement strategies. In both cases, the goal is predictive modeling so you know how to facilitate the necessary changes around new strategies, practices, processes, and employee behaviors.

Apply social media analytics to identify stakeholder sentiment—All the relevant stakeholders, including consumers and “influencer groups,” are producing valuable data through the use of social media. This data can give organizational change teams a look into how change efforts are being perceived by outside stakeholders, and provide leadership with another indicator of “change readiness.”

Capture reference data about current change projects—Every time an organization tackles change, it needs “to capture information about the team involved, the population engaged in the change, how long it took to implement, what tactics were used, and so on.” If this sounds familiar, then you are familiar with metrics-based management. Even companies that are using this approach don’t often apply it directly to their own change management teams.

Use data to select people for change roles—Predictive analytics, once embraced, can be brought to bear on a variety of management circumstances, such as selecting the team members that will lead a specific change project. Metrics-based management tools can help leaders build these teams, manage team performance, and stockpile another valuable data sources for planning future change projects.

Build a dashboard—What good is data if you can’t see it and understand it with a glance? That’s the power of dashboards and any organization that expects to succeed with metrics (no matter how that data is applied) needs to have the ability to build dashboards specific to their immediate needs. This can be every project, service line, recruiting team, or management team. There is no limit except for how prepared leadership is to use these tools.

For more on change management, check out these resources from the OPEN MINDS Industry Library:

  1. What Do Today’s Leaders Think About Managing Change?
  2. Creating and Leading A Team in Times of Change
  3. Don’t Just Sit There: Change!
  4. Managing Change as a Leader’s Challenge
  5. Managing at the Speed of Change: What Does It Take to Be Nimble?

For more on embracing the power of superior data use, join OPEN MINDS Senior Associate, Ken Carr on February 15 at The 2015 OPEN MINDS Performance Management Institute for his session, Using KPI To Manage To Improve Performance & Manage To The Market.


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