Regardless if you are on time and on budget, people make or break a project. What I’m going to discuss today is not managing scope and change orders, but rather managing changes that team needs to go through.
As humans, we are creatures of habit. When new systems are brought in, it requires the systems adopters to not only to learn a new system, but also change their processes. If change is not properly managed, a seemingly smooth project can be easily thrown off the tracks.
Typically, people are not shy about hiding their fears. It leaks out in their tone and responses in meetings or deliverables. When team members name all the blockers or say “no it doesn’t work” before a conversation even starts, it is a clear sign that this person does not agree with the changes. In this situation, you do not want to ignore or dismiss the person. In fact, if left unchecked, this person can be a negative influence on the rest of the team.
So what can be done?
How can you bring people along with the change rather than against it?
Explain Why this Change is Needed and How it Impacts Them.
Purpose is key to buy in. I start all projects off with a kickoff meeting that focuses on why we are making these changes. It’s the time where the project owners explain to the team the purpose and goal of the project. I use this time to address any doubts or challenges that the team has with the project. Most importantly, the project owner is there to hear their concerns and address it. Sometimes the answer is it is what it is and we just need to plow through it. Getting the team to buy into that will reframe their mindset so that they can be more accommodating or creative.
Involve Those that are Apprehensive in the Solution.
When people have a part in coming up with the solution, they tend to take more ownership in the process and results. No one likes to be told what to do. They want to feel like they are valued. Many times, users know better because they are doing the work day in and day out and will have solutions that are more realistic.
Get to Root of their Fears.
I find this is the most impactful change control tactic. Help the user to distinguish if what is not working is a system issue or simply because the user not is familiar with the system. This helps the person distinguish between a project issue versus a person issue. This distinction boils the cloud of “it’s not working” or “it’s harder” into smaller, more digestible pieces to address.
Our project methodology focuses on bringing along the users from the beginning to the end. We have 4 out of 5 milestones that require user buy in or contribute. We are advocates for the project and users.
Our team is here to help your project succeed in every aspect. Call us now for a free consultation.