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3 Things the Best Change Agents Do Differently

Change agents facilitate the transition from old to new for employees.

Questions and concerns are an inherent part of the change process, and the way in which change agents deal with them determines whether or not change will stick.

What separates an ineffective change agent from an effective one? Here are the 3 things the best change agents do differently:

1. They clearly understand the change objectives: Agents who implement successful change efforts identify and measure the impact of the change on the people, structures, processes, and culture of the company. They determine the level and type of sponsorship required. They’re able to find the appropriate sponsors and transfer ownership of the change to them while also anticipating primary and secondary sources of resistance by targets.

2. They effectively manage the change: The most effective change agents systematically apply the principles of change management, communication, learning, reward, and reinforcements. They also integrate multiple changes into a common plan and apply sound project-management principles to all changes when required.

3. They address targets’ concerns:  Successful change agents spend more time listening than they do talking. They focus on targets and sponsors at all steps of the change effort: translating the messages in language that’s meaningful and building team strength at the project level, in senior management groups, and among target groups. They know that effective counseling and coaching techniques make a significant difference. You’ll see them build organization and structure into the delta wherever and whenever possible, delegate at the right time, and skillfully manage the delegated.

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