When planning for a change you need to be both reflective and purposeful. This change may be personal and or professional. I don’t necessarily recommend a total development before launch. But I do offer the Change Planning model below to help you as a leader determine the pieces you may be missing that could sabotage your change initiative.
Planning a Change Question Sheet
Below are questions that will serve you in thinking through, planning, and making successful action steps for a change.
- What is the purpose?
- Who will it affect? How?
- Why is it important to your team? The organization/business/community?
- What made you decide that this is important?
- Did you ask your team for input? If so how and what was their input? If not, why not?
- How will this change affect the staff? Those you serve (clients, customers, vendors, suppliers, supervisor(s), etc.)? You as a leader?
- • Describe the ideal state. Describe the current state. How will you achieve the ideal state?
- In what ways might the staff and your existing skill set be useful for the change?
- What new skills will be needed?
- How will you accomplish training these new skills?
- Explain, in detail the necessary skill set for completion of change (if multiple people have/need multiple skills, list the key responsibilities of the change and the necessary skill sets for success)
- What skills will you as leader(s) need for implementation of the vision?
- How can the Leadership team partner with you to enable completion?
Incentives. Explain your plan to move your team and yourself towards completion of this change.
- Why should we work towards this change?
- How is this change relevant? Now? In the future?
- Identify the resistors to the change.
- What will keep you, as the leader motivated?
- How will you continue to keep the team focused?
- How will you measure success and failure?
- What steps will you take to reward success and re-direct unmotivated team members?
Resources. Explain what you have and what you need.
- What kind of budget will be available?
- How much time is needed?
- Explain how this change will be delegated to staff members.
- What will be the steps for follow-up and accountability?
- What resource do you currently have available (list everything from paperwork to people to machines to policies. The more explicit you are in what you have the better your completion will be.
- What resources will you need (list everything from paperwork to people to machines to policies – the more explicit you are in what you need the better your completion will be)
- In what ways may you secure these needs?
Action Plan. Explain in detail what you are going to do and how it will get done.
- Re-visit your Vision, and break the change into steps.
- What are the steps for completion?
- Goal (Quality, Quantity, Time Frame, Resources) – What is the 1st step for completion?
- Strategy – In what ways might you implement a strategy for completion of the 1st step?
- Objective – How will you know that you have completed the 1st step?
- Responsibility – Who’s going to accomplish the objective?
- Timeline – When is the implementer going to accomplish that objective?
- Feedback and Evaluation – Who and how is the implementer going to know if they accomplished good or bad work on their objective?
- How do you plan for a change?
- What existing processes do you / team / organization have in place for reflective thought?
- Would this system work for plans outside of change? What would be different?
- Describe how this applies to your current practice / life?
About the Author. Michael Cardus founded Create-Learning, a Buffalo NY-based learning and consulting firm that provides experiential development to create great experiences for improved performance and lasting memories. He facilitates, educates, and speaks with groups in a variety of settings including Fortune 500 Companies, small businesses, universities and classrooms. Best known for his high energy and creativity, Mike has facilitated groups from as small as two to as many as three thousand.
Are you considering a change? Are you taking the steps recommended in this model? Share your thoughts, stories, and experiences around this topic in the comments section below. I’d love to hear from you!