Articles

2. Determining the case for change

TLDRoffon

Leading change: If you are responsible for leading a team through change, you have to start with a vision. Ask yourself this: “What am I trying to achieve, and why?”

Staff affected by change: The success of our organisation depends on our full participation in change – we all share a responsibility for the outcomes.

Why change?
All change begins with an idea, which is likely to be heavily influenced by external disruptions or developments – including technological, economic and social factors. In short, these factors will drive a need for things to be different. Knowing what these factors are - and why they are important - establishes the reason(s) for change.

A good tool for examining the purpose of change is the PESTLE analysis – where we consider the political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental factors at play. It provides a helpful framework for considering why change may be needed, as well as beginning to identify what form it could take, and who it might affect. To explore this further, click on the document here to consider questions and examine how this may work in the university sector.

Developing a greater understanding of the reasons for change often leads to discussions identifying where we are now, and where we would like to be. Likewise, it may also highlight what will happen if we do nothing. The PESTLE considerations may help with the why, what and who, although we will still need to consider how any change will be implemented. Furthermore, we must recognise change does not take place in isolation. Key people have a stake and can exert influence, and we should consider existing organisational strategies and plans. Whatever is done must therefore, take account of the range of different stakeholders, and has to align with the overall organisational direction.

Change Management resources