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Introduction to Organizational Change Management Methods

A business needs to evolve to survive. And evolving means making changes. Without an organizational change model in place, the success of your structural changes comes down to nothing more than dumb luck.

To manage almost any change within a business, whether it’s a small or significant change, one must cultivate acceptance and support. People will need to learn, adopt new mindsets, alter their behavior, adapt to new practices and processes, and make many other changes. We present you with some of the leading organizational change management models.


The ADKAR is a bottom-up change management model. It focuses on the individuals behind the organizational change, and it’s more of a set of goals to reach than a sequential method. ADKAR stands for Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability, and Reinforcement.

  • Awareness – Making sure that the staff understands the need for change.

  • Desire – Inspiring the desire to change.

  • Knowledge – Making sure that each employee knows how the change will be implemented and what are their specific parts of the process.

  • Ability – Checking if each employee can perform their tasks and see whether they need some extra experience.

  • Reinforcement – Implementing rewards and incentives to make sure that the employees will maintain the change until it becomes the new standard.

Lewin’s Change Management Model

One of the most popular approaches to change management. Lewin’s change model includes splitting the entire change process into three stages:

  • Unfreeze. Unfreeze your current process after realizing that your organization needs to change. Analyze everything to see how things are done and let everyone know what’s wrong with the ongoing process.

  • Make changes. The next step is deploying the changes and guiding your employees as they adapt. Education, support, and communication are vital at this stage for addressing issues as soon as they appear.

  • Refreeze. When you successfully deploy, measure, and tweak the changes according to feedback, it’s time to refreeze the new norms. It is vital for preventing old habits to resurface.

Nudge Theory

Nudge theory is a tactic and mindset that can be used to frame the organizational changes more effectively and attractively. Nudging change is believed to be more effective than when you’d try to enforce change in a more traditional style. Pave the way for your employees to choose to do it themselves instead of telling them what to do.

How to implement it? First, clearly define the changes you want to introduce and consider them from your staff’s point of view. Show the best option by using evidence, present the change as a choice, limit obstacles, and listen to feedback. Make sure to keep the momentum with short-term modifications and wins.

Kotter’s Theory

Kotter’s theory also focuses more on the people behind the change and less on the change itself. Kotter’s approach uses a sense of urgency for change and maintaining the momentum, and it can be effectively used in adapting your organization to the current business climate. It works by:

  • Creating a sense of urgency. It will give you the initial traction needed to get your team motivated to change.

  • Building a core coalition. Create a team of key players (stakeholders and leaders) and convince them of the need to change.

  • Forming a strategic vision. Define the changes you want to introduce and communicate your vision.

  • Getting everyone on board. Communicate your ideas to the rest of the organization.

  • Reducing friction and removing barriers. Try to predict what might pose an obstacle to your changes’ progress.

  • Generate short-term wins. These short-term wins will give your employees a sense of accomplishment, which will make them keep up with the newly implemented changes.

  • Sustaining acceleration. Sustain the momentum you generated.

  • Setting the changes in stone. Do this both in your company culture and documentation.

To implement organizational changes, you need to have a set framework to deploy your changes. That will let you deploy them reliably and allow your organization to evolve. By using one or more of these change management models, you will have the best opportunity to make them your team’s new norms and natural habits.

We at Titanium Cobra Solutions know the emotional weight that an organizational change carries with itself. We can help you implement organizational change methods with an approach which draws from experiential learning about what can make the changes be cast in stone.

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