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Why Leadership is Important for Organisational Change Management?

Change can have a significant impact on your organisation’s trajectory, but with considering the efficiency of the strategic positioning, a business needs to know “WHY” Organisational Change Management (OCM) is essential.

In retrospect, 70% of Organisational Change Management initiatives fail due to a lack of proper framework to implement change and because leaders fail to recognise the emotional aspects of their employees. This is a direct result of several factors including poor leadership role-modelling, uninvolved Project Sponsors, lack of bottom-up support, employee resistance, lack of resources, inaccurate requirements, inaccurate estimates, shifting project objectives, lack of change sustainability, and poor communication.

Change is inevitable, as every organisation will undergo some sort of transitional change to remain scalable and visible. Organisations must leverage been nimble and willing to make decisions quickly, and those that are able to do this successfully will face a lot of change (and over short periods of time). This change could be organisation-wide or perhaps team-based including adapting to market conditions, customer requirements, competitive influences, new IT or SaaS technology or restructuring the business model.

However, organisations cannot skip organisational change opportunities as Change Management is essential for business survival. The ability to embrace change and then integrate the internal components into a successful implementation is what all successful organisations have in common.

What is Organisational Change Management (OCM)?

Organisational Change Management (OCM) is a framework for managing the effect of new business processes, changes in organisational structure or cultural changes within an enterprise. It deals with changes that alter a major component of the organisation, which can significantly impact the entire organisation and the individuals within it. Simply put, Organisational Change Management (OCM) addresses the people side of Change Management.

By leveraging change to introduce a successful solution, typically this involves three (3) major phases:

  • Preparation
  • Implementation
  • Follow-though

A systematic approach to Organisational Change Management (OCM) is beneficial when change requires people throughout an organisation to learn new behaviours and skills. By formally setting expectations, utilising tools to improve communication, and proactively seeking ways to reduce misleading information, there is a visual focus on improving the productivity of employees by helping them to adapt and implement the change in their day-to-day work. Therefore, stakeholders are more likely to buy into a change (initially) but also remain committed to the change, even if any unforeseen circumstances eventuate.

Why is Organisational Change Management important?

Organisational Change Management is a business necessity in the present scenario. Employees leave, and new employees are hired, new teams and departments are created as the organisation grows, and gradually innovative technologies and strategies are adopted for organisations to remain ahead of their competitors.

By driving successful adoption of change and the Change Management Process in an organisation, employees can understand and commit to the shift in mindset, working effectively to implement the change needed to transform the organisation. But without organisational change, an enterprise will face lower employee morale, slow skill development, slower skill retention, and inadequate processes. Your Change Management Plan can lead to the failure of an organisation.

The key to successful, productive organisational change is defined by how you manage the various transition phases, the Change Management Plan for keeping employees informed and whilst simultaneously ensuring your business is operating smoothly. By simply asking for constructive feedback as you implement the change and make necessary adjustments to your Change Management Plan, this communicates to your team of their involvement (and your support) they need to maintain their high morale and facilitate the change from their end.

What are the 3 types of Organisational Change?

Within directed change, it is important to recognise that the diverse kinds of change require different strategies and plans to gain engagement, reduce resistance, and ease acceptance of change. The following are the three (3) most important types of organisational change:

Transitional Change

Transitional Change leads to the replacement of what already exists with something that is regarded as ’new’ by the people involved but, the final destination can be visualised (in details), before the transition commences.

This type of change is delivered through a project and the use of traditional types of Change Management tools, as the people are significantly impacted by skillsets and actions.


  • Mergers and re-organisations
  • Acquisitions
  • Creation of new products or services that replace old versions
  • IT implementations that do not require significant shifts in culture or behaviour

Developmental Change

Developmental Change are business improvements in established areas (both to optimise and improve) – existing skills, processes, procedures, methods, or performance standards.

This type of change is delivered through continuous improvement, quality driven change objective or an ‘enhancement’ project.


  • Increasing sales
  • Increasing product quality
  • Communication training
  • Work tasks process improvements
  • Team development
  • Team problem-solving efforts

Transformational Change

Transformational Change is when the future state is not and cannot be known in detail since the final state is based on evolution – the outcomes of trial v. error when latest information and new interactions are integrated – the reason why specific programs and Program Management disciplines were developed to help with change.

This type of change is the most unpredictable and impactful due to the challenges to the fundamental concepts on which the organisation is based. As with both adoption of the change and delivery of the strategic vision, the actual change process, the sequence and content, and timing of changes will be determined (less by planning) by the actual rates at which the underlying employees’ beliefs and value systems change.

Emotion and intellect will determine the success of change. There is no mapping between the Current state and Future state and steps involving mindsets, behaviours, and influence must be made by the Executive Team, Managers, key stakeholders, and employees. The future under this type of change is “invented” to create the required Future state.


  • Complex mergers and acquisitions
  • Transformation of traditional business model and sales channel towards virtual concept and technology focus
  • Radical re-branding and marketing efforts

Organisational Change leadership creates employee engagement

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Managing organisational change is complicated but learning how to manage organisational change is a key component of leadership. Your Executive Team must align their employees to the reason for the change, often working against long-standing values, habits, and beliefs. Organisations are more likely to succeed with a clear Change Management strategy (supported with visuals), by planning change initiatives proactively and engage employees before, during and after the Change Management initiative – whatever the change effort, communication is the key ingredient.

With developing a Change Management strategy, this provides direction and purpose for all other Change Management activities. The true value requires a mindset and culture change. By transparent communication throughout the organisation and outlining the unique characteristics of the change, its risks, and potential resistance, Change Practitioners set themselves and their Change Project Team up for success.

Whenever an organisation decides to change its structure, strategies, culture, core values, policies, or technology, the end goal is to improve both business performance and growth. There are many reasons to implement change and may include:

  • Adapting to economic, political, or market changes.
  • Digital transformation and technology upgrades.
  • Solving internal problems with organisational restructure.
  • Improving processes, procedures, and workflow.
  • Expansion of the marketing strategy to reach and engage new customers.
  • Launching a rebranding campaign (e.g., product, service, or business).
  • Every organisation is uniquely different and therefore, so are the reasons to engage organisational change.

In fact, two (2) out of every three (3) organisations must change at least four (4) times every five (5) years – if you want to remain competitive, you need to embrace change sooner, rather than later!

When implemented correctly, organisational change creates a more competitive and effective business model. By reviewing and understanding how other organisations managed to implement organisational change successfully, why it worked and how to overcome adversity, this all helps your situation and so you can apply that knowledge to your own organisation (and change initiatives).

Simply recognising the need for change and knowing how to make that change successful are two vastly different skillsets. Change Management strategy is key – but, where to begin? This requires vision, stakeholder engagement, and a tailored strategy to deliver successful results. It all starts with understanding what types of organisational change you are planning to implement.


Navigating through any organisational change is a multiple step process and represents a strategic perspective on how an organisation will transition.

Certain factors may nurture the atmosphere within an organisation that is conducive to change. However, it is likely that you will need to employ different approaches and to overcome different barriers, since it may take a long time to achieve change. Therefore, it is important to consider the scale of change realistically and decide if small, incremental changes may be more suitable than a full-scale organisational change.

Change Management is a critical process for any organisation. Changes can be difficult for employees considering the implementation of any strategic business, processes alignment, or technology initiative. Employees need to be prepared for change and the Change Management process to help them through the transition period.

What can you do to become a more effective Change Management leader? Organisational Change Management requires a strong management team, a culture of continuous improvement, a clear communication strategy, and motivated employees to achieve business goals.

Need some guidance on your next steps? Let’s start a conversation…