By Mark Dillard, Principal Consultant, & Shannan Simms, PhD, Principal Consultant
Organizational change is increasing at exponential rates. Technology transformation, process improvement efforts, mergers and acquisitions, and innovations like artificial intelligence and machine learning all require organizations to adapt new ways of working. Some recent estimates indicate employees spend 40% of their time responding to organizational change and 60% of their time doing the work they were hired to do. Achieving sustainable change within an organization requires people to work differently. Organizations don’t change; people change.
And people follow leaders. Leaders at all levels of the organization:
What many people fail to see is that while leadership development is, at its core, about training leaders to lead; leadership is also critical to driving organizational change to meet project and performance objectives. The skills and abilities of organizational leaders at all levels are one of the single biggest factors in affecting the organization’s ability to change.
When you deliberately develop leaders, you embed new ways of thinking and behaving into the DNA of the organization. When you focus on using a structured approach to manage organizational change you nurture and leverage change agility and leadership capability at all levels of an organization.
Leadership development and organizational change management work hand-in hand. In fact, without strong leadership development, organizational change management is difficult, if not impossible.
Managing this intersection explicitly and intentionally will strengthen the organization’s ability to tackle change in a more systemic, sustainable way. Lasting change comes through shifts in how people across an organization view their role, and the new awareness and set of skills they develop that can be employed in innovative ways within the organization. This is where change management and leadership development intersect.
Here are three ways to start rethinking your approach to the intersection of leadership development and change management