The terms change management and innovation are often tied together because both mean something new isoccurring. However, because of its roots, using the term “change management” could tarnish the reputation of yourinnovation project.
Nomenclatureis everything. “Change management” as a term and a practice was made popular in the 1980s and 90s in the context of re-engineering projects. These projects tendedto focus on cutting costs by using new IT and technology to automate existing processes.Wikipedia defines it well: the goal of the change management team was to”introduce the change and get approval” by employees and users. Theteam was friendly and helpful and would cheerlead to get peopleto adopt the change. But these changes were often made without the employee’s input and rarely addressed their needs. Back then, this was as “human-centric” as re-engineering got and, in many cases, it still is.
Old business language dies hard. And choosing your words carefully can help you get off on theright foot when you’re next navigating the changes of an innovation project.
Here’s my take on how “managing change” differs during an innovation project versus a re-engineering project.
Did I capture your perspective on change management? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Happy changing!