Why do things fall apart as soon as the Project Manager disappears at the end of a project? (aka What is Change Management)
We’ve all seen it. Projects go live, everyone’s excited, then a few weeks or months later, everything is a mess, and it doesn’t look anything like it was supposed to when it launched. The first instinct of a lot of leaders is to call the Project Manager back to fix it. The problem is, it’s not usually a Project Management problem. It’s a Change Management problem.
A Project Manager’s job is to work with a dedicated project team to make sure that everything is lined up for launch, that there’s an updated process to follow, and that training is complete (among other things). A Project Manager is not necessarily focused on how the “Business As Usual” team is prepared to take on the new or changed workload. Predictably, this has caused some problems. Enter Change Management!
Change Management is a relatively new field, created in response to things falling apart between “Project Mode” and “Business As Usual”. Where Project Managers focus on their dedicated project teams, Change Managers work directly with the people that are going to have to maintain things when the project team is dismantled. They are responsible for making sure that everyone on each affected team understands what’s coming their way and why. They share the Change Story, and facilitate communications up and down the hierarchy to help everyone feel comfortable with what things are going to look like after launch. Change Managers bring the glue that holds things together after projects go live, and can make the difference between meeting the medium to long-term goals of the project and not.
What is Change Management?
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