A recent client meeting via Teams commenced with the usual introduction round table of all participants . Working remotely as geographically dispersed teams of people around the globe meant that we needed to ensure at the top of the call we were aware of who we were speaking to and in what context, according to their representation on the call.
As we reached the Business Change Manager, he introduced himself and added that he was responsible for delivering “that fluffy business change aspect of the programme”.
Hearing this immediately concerned me as I am very certain that there is nothing fluffy about Business Change when implementing ITSM solutions. To ensure that your user communities are fully engaged and ready to Go Live on time is just as important to your programme as all of the technical implementations. Even with all of the most fabulous automation and technology, it’s still people who can make or break a successful implementation if they aren’t prepared. I wondered whether this Business Change Manager didn’t appreciate what was required to deliver Business Change or simply was ignorant to what the role entailed.
Humans don’t always respond well to change or fully embrace it and in many of the larger organisations I work with, you will often hear people say “This is how we’ve always done it” or “Why do we have to change when it’s not broken”. This type of resistance needs to be managed when it’s small because it can spread quite quickly across user communities and make things quite complex to engage the user communities with the vision and idea that the change is a good thing.
A good Business Change Manager can share the programme vision to all members of an organisation and have the ability to speak to each and every person as though they were colleagues working side-by-side and sharing the journey together. Many people who are recipients of change have their own priorities to focus on and introducing change into their worlds can have an impact on them. The goal is to make the impact a positive one and transition the users from old to new as smoothly as can possibly be done.
I’ve worked on many projects where UAT has been delayed due to lack of process being available to test or even worse, users are not ready to go live. Business Change needs to work in alignment with the technical project timelines to ensure the human aspect of the project is ready to move into operational ways of working.
Business Change is definitely not fluffy and if you get it wrong, it could have quite a sting in its tail.