Change Program Roles

Assigning roles and responsibilities is a key step to energizing your people for action in achieving your change program goals.

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Types of Change Program Roles

Your change program, no matter how meticulous the planning, will not bring itself to life. People are needed to complete the necessary actions and to hurdle all of the barriers put before it.

You will need to identify and communicate the various change management responsibilities of all the people required to see your change program through. The roles you will actually need will depend on a number of variables.

However, generally speaking, a change program role may be one of four types:

Change Driver
the principle cause and motivator of change
Change Implementer
manages and performs tasks to bring about change
Change Enabler
sets up environments so that change can happen
Change Recipient
expected to behave differently in the changed organization

The key driver roles for organizational change are:

Change Leader
The change leader should be sufficiently senior in the organization to be able to command resources and the attention of the executive team. The change leader has a strong personal commitment to the success of the program and is the principal trouble-shooter.
Program Sponsor
The program sponsor is the executive's representative for ensuring that the appropriate resources are committed, problems are solved and the program succeeds.
Steering Committee
Steering Committee members share overall responsibility for the success of the program with the Program Sponsor. The committee typically represents the key stakeholders and reviews regularly the progress of the project.

The key implementer roles include:

Project Manager
The project manager has overall responsibility for detailed planning and implementation of one or more components of the change program.
Project Team Members
Project team members are responsible for completing various project activities.

The key enabler roles include:

Middle Managers
Middle managers are responsible for supporting and communicating change initiatives and allocating the resources required within their area of control.
Supervisors
Frontline supervisors and team leaders are the face of the organization to employees and serve a critical role in supporting, consoling and coaching employees throughout the change process.

Find out more about these program change roles by downloading our change management guide and workbook, Managing Change in the Workplace.

Tips for Assigning Roles and Responsibilities

For the key driver roles, select people that are genuinely supportive of the proposed changes. These roles should always be filled voluntarily.

For team membership roles, such as on project teams and working groups, include opinion leaders in the organization and skeptics that you need to win over. Sometimes, giving objectors a say in how things are done can lead to these change resisters becoming your greatest allies.

For each role, do you have the right mix of task assignment and goal assignment? The distinction here is the difference between delegating a specific task or action and assigning an end goal or objective.

As a final consideration, have you also checked off that you have covered adequately the two areas of accountability; change management/project implementation activities and new operational activities? The former activities deal with moving from where you are now to the new way of working. The latter involves activities within the new way of working. Many organizations spend considerable effort getting to where they want to be, but leave employees, customers and suppliers wondering to where it is they have arrived.

Expert View Author: AIMM MAITD

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Our comprehensive guide and workbook will help you define the roles and responsibilities required for your change program, identify skill gaps and select the right people for the right roles. Its tools, exercises, techniques and tips cover every aspect of managing change and is intended for everyone expected to lead, manage and implement change.

Managing Change in the Workplace

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Managing Change in the Workplace

Our practical guide and workbook is for everyone expected to lead, manage and implement change in the workplace.

Managing Change in the Workplace

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