The Wheel of Change – A Checklist for leaders
1. Shared visions
The desired future must be described in concrete and easily comprehensible terms. It must be challenging but achievable. Affected employees should identify with it. The mutual development process is crucial for the power of persuasion and the motivation it triggers.
2. Symbols and signals
To promote orientation and credibility, symbolic actions taken on the part of management are particularly important. Staging a break-through in a wall, etc. generates attention and indicates the direction to be taken. Only clear signals reach everyone.
3. Control: guidance, structures and process
Change processes require structures too. A steering committee must guide the process on the basis of routinely conducted reviews and analysis of risks.
Goals must be compared horizontally, assessed in terms of consistency and anchored through meetings with employees (goal development, annual
4. Training and tools
Is the project leader prepared for the task? How do the managers prepare themselves? Will additional training be needed?
5. Champions and sponsors
(Power) promoters drive the process politically at the level of top management. Champions demonstrate the new behavior and represent the positive results of change. Through their behavior they provide positive examples and inspire others. Both set energy free and set the pace of change. They take new paths and their behavior moves others to fall in behind them.
6. Quick wins
Nothing is more successful than success. Small and early success which benefits as many employees as possible must be communicated. Goals of change can be defined in concrete terms and a decentralized fashion in the various areas of the organization. Pilot projects have a motivating and inspirational effect.
7. Communication and Best Practice
What are the persons affected allowed to know? When? Who? Through which means? How should feedback be given? How does joint learning take
place and how are the achievements made in pilot areas transferred to other areas in the form of good practices?
8. Approach and adjustment /PDCA
Standards and values (unwritten laws) must be adjusted systematically. By promoting and demanding the (new) modes of behavior associated with them, stabilization and sustainability are ensured. Changes in procedures for reporting and new forms of authorization lead to a new distribution of power.
According to the principle of the Deming cycle (Plan-Do-Check-Act), the process is assessed on a regular basis and measures are initiated to readjust it.
9. Measures, milestones, feedback
A project plan with a transparent timeline (roadmap/ architecture), milestones and work packets is the foundation for planning the change process.
Feedback, for example from a sounding board (selection of representative stakeholders with changing members), flows back into the project constantly.
10. Perception and recognition
Milestones which are reached are rewarded by recognition and bonuses. Success is shared, models and heroes generate identification and motivation,
and an exchange of best practices takes place.