Promising Practices Promising PracticesPromising Practices
A forum for government's best ideas and most innovative leaders.

Best Practices Do Not Work

ARCHIVES
Image via John David Bigl III/Shutterstock.com

Many government agencies are challenged by broken change implementation processes.  In a desperate attempt to add some form of structure, we grab the cookie cutter and start pressing. 

The problem? "Best practices" do not always fit--and many times they simply won't stick. 

What does the change methodology look like for your organization? If you use a “cookie cutter—one size fits all” approach in your methodology for change implementation you might want to reconsider. Instead, use an existing methodology as a guide, but create a strategy that is uniquely customized to your organization.  This will maximize resource allocation and minimize costs. 

So where do you start?

Employees are the organization--use them.

Over the last 20 years we have experienced the onset of a technological revolution, the rise of the information economy and the increased value of knowledge workers.  This dynamic environment created more individual employees with more unique, valuable knowledge than ever before. Use the contributions of these knowledge workers--build their experience into your change strategy. 

Factor in organizational culture.

We often talk about organizational culture as a key component to understanding an organization. But we often fail to factor culture into our change strategies.  Choose a change strategy that will accommodate the nuance of your organizational culture and maximize the overall effectiveness of the implementation.

Evaluate (and then re-evaluate) the progress during and after. 

The change process should support a real-time “vector check” to see if the strategy is working (as planned) or if it needs adjustment.  Change methodologies include various combinations of steps, milestones, stages, and phases.  It does not matter how many and in what order.  What matters is verifying that the process is working. This will support managing budgets and timelines.

There are tens, if not hundreds, of steps, processes, and methodologies to assist organizations with change.  The challenge that comes before the change even begins is to carefully select and integrate a unique change strategy that will meet the needs of your organization.

In the absence of a customized change strategy that is unique to your organization, the potential success of the best planned change process remains uncertain. Whatever you do, don’t grab the cookie cutter!

Dr. Victoria M. Grady is an Assistant Professorial Lecturer at The George Washington University in Washington D.C., Principal Consultant at PivotPoint Business Solutions and co-author of The Pivot Point: Success in Organizational Change.

FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.