3 key elements to consider when implementing change management on a global scale

As we trade in what are increasingly Volatile Uncertain Complex and Ambiguous (VUCA) markets, it is vital for organisations to improve the responsiveness and agility of its people to change.

With the advent of digitalisation today, markets are no longer limited by national borders and organisations are increasingly spreading rapidly on a global scale. In this CMC blog we explore some key aspects of a global strategy to internalise and embed change management best practices throughout an organisation.

Internalising change management best practice is just the same as introducing any organisation-wide change to new ways of working. Here’s our check list of some key critical success factors to consider:

  • Secure executive sponsorship for your change efforts, and if required coach the Sponsor in what change leadership needs to be.
  • Build critical competencies at all levels. Hold people at all levels accountable for their role performance.
  • Use a common language, methodology and tool kit which works for your organisation. Start with a standard method (why reinvent the wheel?) and customise it for your organisation, if necessary. 
  • Treat this like a project - it is one! Start your change management activity at the same time as project management.
  • Agree success criteria and ROI measures during project initiation.
  • Resource it properly, with a budget and full-time people. Don't skimp. Be clear on both the technical and people-side accountability.

With CMC’s experience of helping global organisations develop their internal change capability, we have delved deeper into what we believe are the three most important elements to implementing change successfully on a global scale:

1.Secure Executive Sponsorship for your Change Efforts

Sponsorship is crucial to every change effort and when that effort moves to a global scale, it becomes even more important to find influential leaders in each region, country, business unit or function who understand how to sponsor change. According to Prosci Best Practices data 50% of Sponsors don't know or understand what great sponsorship of a change requires of them. When access to these high-level sponsors is secured across the organisation you can support them with a "sponsor roadmap" to ensure they remain active and visible throughout the lifecycle of this change.

As sponsorship is a role not just a title. It is important that each leader is able to convey these messages in a way which resonates with the culture they are influencing while still maintaining the core messaging of the global perspective. Sponsors need to translate key messaging into the language which holds the greatest meaning and impact across the global organisation, answering critical questions such as:

  • Why does this change (the introduction of change management best practices) matter?
  • What results do we expect if change management best practices are successfully adopted?
  • Why is this change being pursued now?
  • What are the consequences to the organisation if we don't successfully adopt change management best practices?

2.Build Internal Competencies at all Levels

Building up and strengthening internal competencies across all regions, countries, business units and functions is increasingly essential to global success. Choose representatives who are embedded in the processes of that region and are ingrained in the culture to participate in training, allowing them to develop core competencies which support the overall organisational development and acceleration of change management maturity.

CMC can support your teams in building these competencies through a range of Prosci change management courses.

3.Build a common language, methodology and tool kit which works for your organisation on a global scale

To be successful, it is important that each region understands the approach to change management as something which works for them, not something dictated by management with limited understanding of the unique nuances of local operations.

Prosci Best Practices Research reports that using a single structured change management method with excellence allows an organisation to have a six fold increase in the likelihood of its projects delivering their required ROI goals. 

Successfully adopting a global perspective of change management requires taking the time to adapt training, tools and resources to meet the needs of the individual region.

For those organisations that wish to be become self-sufficient in planning and developing change management capabilities -  CMC can advise on enterprise development, Prosci licensing options and we deliver  the Prosci Train-the-Trainer  program to enable  you to  organise your own Prosci's role-based training programs supplementing these with their own knowledge of cultural norms and business operations. 

Take a look at our course comparison guide to see how CMC could support your organisation in developing change competencies.

Or if you would like to have a discussion to explore the benefits that change management can bring to your organisation please get in touch.