How to Implement Change Management on a Global Scale
Written by Prosci
In today’s global marketplace, organizations that can change more effectively increase their opportunities and competitive advantage, which makes a global strategy for change management critical. Here are three keys to implementing change management on a global scale.
Plan Globally, Implement Locally
Consider the critical success factors for building organizational change capability, and apply the concepts with a global perspective:
- Secure executive sponsorship for your change efforts
- Build critical competencies at all levels
- Build a common language for change, and make the methodology and tools work for your organization
1. Secure executive sponsorship for your change efforts
When your organization operates on a global scale, it is important to find influential leaders in each region to sponsor change management capability. Consider who will sponsor change capability for the North American operations? For the European operations? For Asia? Ideally, if you have access to these high-level sponsors across the organization, you can support them with a sponsor roadmap that ensures these executives act in a cohesive manner, taking consistent action and communicating consistent messages to the organization.
However, to be successful globally, it is also important that each global leader adapts messages and actions to resonate with the culture they are influencing. This is why having a group of global change leaders is essential to building change capability. These sponsors act as role models to the other leaders in their region by demonstrating effective sponsorship on all initiatives. They can also translate the following messages into language that resonates across your global organization:
- Why change management matters
- What it means for the organization
- Why we are pursuing this now
- What happens if we do not pursue it
Finally, this core group of executives should align on what other strategies will be implemented to build change management capability in the organization, including:
- Standardizing processes
- Integrating with key projects
- Building competencies throughout all levels of employees
2. Build internal competencies at all levels
Many global organizations benefit from strategically selecting local trainers for each region of the organization— people who are embedded in the processes of that region and are ingrained in the culture. Sending these individuals through the Prosci Train-the-Trainer Program allows them to conduct role-based training programs in their regions with the cultural norms and business operations at the forefront, ensuring successful training delivery and skill building.
As the organization equips more individuals with core change management competencies, virtual communities of practice can provide ongoing opportunities to share best practices.
3. Build a common language, and
make the methodology and tools work for your organization
For change management capability to be successful in a global organization, it is important that each region sees change management resources and tools as something meant “for them,” not something that is handed down from a corporate entity in another hemisphere. While having a common language and process for change is essential, it is equally important that they communicate the common language and process in ways that resonate with each region.
The global organizations that are most successful in building enterprise change management take the time to adapt change management training, tools and resources to meet the needs of global locations. This could include:
- Translating the materials into the languages spoken in that region
- Adapting imagery to resonate with each culture
- Integrating the vernacular of the organization
- Cobranding materials so they have a familiar look and feel
You can make all of these adaptations with an organizational license to Prosci’s materials. Your organizational license also makes mass distribution of training content, tools and resources across the globe easier, so a common language and process for change is established organization-wide.
Many global organizations have success in building enterprise change capability when they take the time to adapt their strategies and content. If building global enterprise change capability is a challenge you’re facing, please connect with us and we can help you navigate your options and achieve success.