Change Management in the digital age is challenging as the digital realities are forcing companies to change more frequently and the transformations are more substantive and significant. In addition, the digital age has changed the way we live, work, network, learn, and unlearn. Hence, there is a need to think differently about change management in the digital age. The digital paradigm is about speed, agility, stakeholder experience, volatility, and visibility. These ideas and innovations should be a part of the change management program as well.

Historical, linear Change Management frameworks do not match the demands of business in the digital age. Next-generation Change Management must follow some new rules:

The digital revolution is far more significant than the invention of writing or even of printing.” – Douglas Engelbart 

Key Tenets and Differences in Change Management in the Digital Age:

Historically…

 

In the Digital Age 

Change was top-down and driven by management.Change is driven by all levels of an organization, with support from the bottom-up.
The pace of change was slow and deliberate.The pace of change is rapid and constant.
Change activities occurred in a linear fashion.Change activities can be done in parallel.
Change programs often take a long period of time.Change programs are often rapid with a focus on quick experimentation.
Changes are often fully executed before testing for organizational fit.Changes are tested constantly, with failures quickly abandoned and/or tweaked.
Training is done from the top-down, with focus on classroom learning.Training is done on many levels, including peer-to-peer and web-based learning.

Historical, linear Change Management frameworks do not match the demands of business in the digital age. Next-generation Change Management must follow some new rules:

The critical success factors for change management in the digital age include the following:

  • Buy-in for a shared vision
  • Single person accountable for success of Change
  • Support from Senior Leadership
  • Active Stakeholder Engagement
  • Effective and Tailored Communications
  • Training and Coaching
  • Robust, Useful Metrics

Let us know how the digital age has changed your approach to transformation change management? Please share your ideas.

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Change Management Offerings from our Partners:

Science of Successful Organizational Change

Make Change Happen

Managing your Team through Change

Financial Times Change Management Briefing

Master the Change Process

Fundamentals of Change Management

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