Many changes are necessary for survival in the current scenario. My school going daughter started taking online classes during the current scenario. It initially started off as a tracking of reading material revisions by teachers and over the time they started conducting classes over online platform and now they plan even slip tests. It is not easy but given the supervision of parents it was much relief for the teachers. Visualize similar scenario for organizations which are undergoing this type of change.

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Photo by Alexas Fotos on Pexels.com

Many plans are chalked out by leadership to manage the Covid – 19 scenarios, however it comes as a shock that plans do not meet with the immediate approval of colleagues. Changing long held habits at workplace or in home is exceedingly difficult. Sometimes those are too ingrained in the culture to change. Many times, it needs a mix of structural, technical and organizational factors which when missing will impede the implementation of change management. It not only requires careful planning but also needs organization’s capacity to undertake it, effective information gathering along with lessons learned from past change initiatives. However, scenarios like COVID -19 are not common to the current generation though there are some levels of Business Continuity Plans in pace when some disasters are struck to organizations. In this type of scenario Six Sigma principles can effectively be used to manage the change management.

For every process which have been implemented or recommended by leadership, it needs a careful assessment of its decay capability. We need to pay attention to process for its safety, quality, delivery and speed.  Needed to gauge the change, then correct the course like incremental change or breakthrough etc. to avoid any chance of complacency. We can analyze such changes using Kubler – Ross Model, Emotional Cycle of Change and other similar change curves. It might be a difficult analogy to bring Kubler Ross or Five stages model into the current context of Covid – 19, but it is worth analyzing the DBADA (Denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance) terminology to employee’s orientation towards organizational changes suggested during the current scenario.

When encountered with resistance to the changes different strategies can be formulated consisting of strategy formulation, cascading the strategy, evaluating the strategy and finally sustaining the results. Different problem-solving tools can be used like Balanced Scorecard. Employees needed to be made experience the way of change. Employees must develop awareness of the need for change, which when aware they will have personal desire to change.  It is often a established fact of management books that you need to identify the key influencers who can cascade your decision within the organization like so called influencers who convince the employees within the organization. There are numerous tools available which can be used to identify the key influencers.

As you might know in Lean Six Sigma, we commonly follow a technique called DMAIC, which stands for Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control. Like which there are numerous techniques applied for Organizational Change Management like Prosci ADKAR model which stands for Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability and Reinforcement. Lean Six Sigma principles can be applied to focus on processes which reduce resistance. Some of the principles for such model include Increasing the communication, being realistic and not over promising and finally recognize the issues. Some of the tools which are suggested to manage the Organizational change management using lean Six Sigma principles include Flow Charts or SIPOC which are similar to Change readiness checklist encountered in OCM, Control charts can be used to manage Stakeholder analysis and Risk analysis and communication can be managed with tools like Action plans etc.

To conclude there are many initiates implemented by leadership to manage the Covid – 19 scenario like Online communication tools, regular connects, leadership briefings and manager connects etc. and some firms fear that remote will impair productivity, telecommuting might impede employee morale and speed of going online might not be just enough to provide productivity. With imbibing the techniques from Lean Six Sigma tools organizations can effectively analyze the process maturity and can implement necessary controls which make not only workers happy but also make managers and organizations fare well.

Thanks

Jayakumar

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