Your $5M, $10M, $100m $ (Insert any multi-million dollar figure here) project got the green light! Great! What’s next? Today’s successful companies are running their projects through a change management process defined by their change management leadership. Below are some ideas to consider when implementing change or starting new projects.
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What are the Goals of the project? New facilities, future cost savings, revenue growth? Goals should be S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-oriented). A SMART Goal could be “Complete construction of a new maintenance facility for $3.5M that will serve our fleet needs through year 2025 and complete the move by June 15, 2016”.
With a SMART Goal in place, any new ideas, resources, or monies need to run through the filter of the goal.
2. Budget & Resources
What company resources do you need to complete your project? Monies, people, technologies, real estate and outside contractors are all factors to consider. If key resources are not available, the likelihood of success becomes more challenging – and more expensive.
3. Roll-out Budget
You have completed construction on the maintenance facility and moved your people in. Did you budget for training on new equipment, operations, and maybe most importantly employee moral? If the employees directly affected by the project have not been properly informed, project success could be hindered.
4. Key Stakeholders
Board members, C-Suite, VP s, Directors, finance, your direct report, and mangers are obvious key stakeholders to your project. The not-so-obvious stakeholders (or we can label them key influencers) might be Bob, the 25-year shop mechanic. Bob is a vocal cheerleader against change. By involving Bob and his concerns, the project is more likely to be implemented on time, on budget and with the support of a department.
5. Employee Engagement
Are your employees affected by your change project on board with your project? One of the key reasons a change management program is needed for your project is to make sure one department or one group of employees are not united to sabotage. Fortunately there are tools like app-based gamification, team building consultancies and online resources to engage, teach and empower those most impacted by a project.
Setting milestones with dates, like funding, a ground-breaking, technologies installment, and testing are critical to knowing where you are on the project. These milestones should be celebrated and communicated across multiple departments.
7. If Needed… Know When to Pull the Plug
Sometimes the best projects, properly funded, with the right people on board, and unlimited resources still do not go as planned. Outside influences, including disasters, market or economic changes, technology advances or new regulations can knock a project off its original goal. Knowing when to pull the plug vs. providing additional resources can effect a company’s bottom line. Be realistic, if something is out of your control and the best option is to halt the project, just do it.
There are many online and offline resources for Project or Change Management. If you would like to learn more, check out the webinar and conference hosted by Conferences Connect.