Some Comments on Change Success

Think about this: Change initiatives succeed only 30 percent of the time! There are tens of thousands of books published on managing change yet we still have this poor success rate. Why?

First consider that those who will be affected by the change generally do not want it. People hate change; everyone knows that. The possibility of change is distressing, even frightening.

Thus writers focus on how managers can help their employees get past these concerns and help with the change. And that’s good advice.

The books tell the leader what can be done to help these people feel okay and want to contribute to the success. And the books I have read give excellent advice. So, again, why the high failure rate?

What hasn’t been discussed is how the manager feels about the change. The manager has a lot at stake with the change. What are the consequences for the manager if it fails? For many, the possibility of failure is distressing, even frightening—same as for the employees.

Managers needs help with how they are feeling and that is rarely discussed. It is common to hear that “Feelings have no place in business.” But the fact is that humans have feelings and to deny them gets in the way of real success.

Rather than dwelling on feelings, however, let’s look at how we can learn to use them to be even more effective.

Lead Change without Fear is the book which helps the manager in this situation.