There are several change management definitions and the meaning and essence are dependent on the unique vantage point of the proponent. Several change experts who come from academia or the discipline of psychology tend to focus more on the attitudinal change, whereas the business gurus tend to focus on the methods, approaches, components, and delivery of such structured elements to affect acceptance and adoption. Hence, the change management definitions can be interpreted in different ways – but at the core essence, it is about moving the needle in terms of adjusting to the new normal.
BTW, before we answer the question, what is Change Management and how to define it, let’s clear out one confusion in the minds of many. Change management is NOT the same as “Change Control Management”. The latter deals with how project teams manage the changes to the project requirements after the scope and details are agreed to, and the requirements are set. The change management definitions here deal with how to deal with and institute change in light of a planned transformation.
CIOPages.com Change Management Definition:
Change management is a comprehensive and integrated discipline to help individuals, teams, and enterprises as a whole to adjust, adapt, and thrive in a future state that is an exponential leap from the current state. Change Management is not just about the external manifestations – such as communication and training – but more about culture, psyche, and mindset, as well.
Change Management Definitions from other Reputable Sources:
Change management is the process, tools and techniques to manage the people side of change to achieve the required business outcome. Change management incorporates the organizational tools that can be utilized to help individuals make successful personal transitions resulting in the adoption and realization of change.
Change management (sometimes abbreviated as CM) is a collective term for all approaches to preparing and supporting individuals, teams, and organizations in making organizational change. It includes methods that redirect or redefine the use of resources, business process, budget allocations, or other modes of operation that significantly change a company or organization. Organizational change management (OCM) considers the full organization and what needs to change, while change management may be used solely to refer to how people and teams are affected by such organizational transition. It deals with many different disciplines, from behavioral and social sciences to information technology and business solutions.
Change management is a systematic approach to dealing with change both from the perspective of an organization and the individual.
The coordination of a structured period of transition from situation A to situation B in order to achieve lasting change within an organization.
The now defunct BNET Business Dictionary
Change management is the management of change and development within a business or similar organization.
Change management is the systematic approach and application of knowledge, tools and resources to deal with change. It involves defining and adopting corporate strategies, structures, procedures and technologies to handle changes in external conditions and the business environment.
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