I worked for the telecommunications superstar, Lucent Technologies, right before it’s big fall from financial grace. I was fortunate to be in the CIO organization which was lead by a very visionary executive, Earnestine Barnes-Linder. She encouraged us to prepare for the changes that she so wisely foresaw. Earnestine even distributed copies of the book “Who Moved My Cheese?” by Dr. Spencer Johnson. I attended a workshop by the author and was less than impressed. But, when I finally took the time to read the book, it was indeed outstanding. Mr. Johnson is an expert on individual and organizational change. The book gave insight into how to recognize that your cheese or goal had moved and provided suggestions on how to work through the feelings and adjust to change. However, there are other books that provide more substance and detail on stress and change management techniques.
Noble & Associates Consulting and its consultants have years of experience with software and technology implementations. The whole point of any new system is to change or improve some process, capability or results. Since there is always change and people are stressed by change, then change management should always be a consideration in project funding, planning and management.
So what’s the cheese?
- For an individual, it might have been owning a home. The current mortgage crisis may be moving that cheese.
- For others, it might be life long employment with a company paid pension. The economy and corporate mergers, acquisitions and downsizing may have changed that cheese.
- For production managers the cheese may be efficient operations and on-time deliveries. Disruptions in the supply chain, broken processes and quality problems may be crumbling that cheese.
- The corporate executive may have thought that the latest and greatest system or technology was the cheese. However, cost overruns, unrealized functionality and out of sync processes could be slicing away at that cheese.
- For the average employee, the cheese may be to feel like they are competent and even expert at doing the job. The introduction of a new system or technology, and the need to learn new ways of doing things, could be the last straw.
In the final analysis, it doesn’t matter what caused your cheese to change. Change happens. Stress happens. Deal with it.
Consider implementing stress management and change management programs.
NOBLE & ASSOCIATES CONSULTING, INC
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