Change management is a structured and intentional approach to support people through change. It prepares, equips and assists individuals to make the changes required to perform their jobs. With a dedicated focus on facilitating adoption and uptake, change management is aimed at supporting holistic and successful change. This is a critical process so that everyone can internalise, reflect on and understand the change, and can arrive at a point where they embrace and promote the change at a personal, community and institutional level.
Change is personal
The SUNStudent change management approach is grounded in neuroscience. Change is a process, a journey, and never a once-off event. Having a growth mindset is important from a change perspective, and is a decision we all need to make daily. This is not always an easy decision to make, though. Change will not happen to you – you
are the change.
The power of our minds during a period of chaos/change
The neuroscience of learning
cycle of change
Reactions to any form of change depends on the interplay between emotional and cognitive processes. Because of this complex interplay, every person will react differently to change.
There is a combination of three factors that will influence how individuals cope with change in the workplace. These factors include: the nature of the change, the individual's psychological make-up and the manner in which management handles change.
Generally individuals go through change in various stages during the process of change. As can be seen from the stages depicted in the image, individuals' attitudes towards change evolve as they become familiar with the change.
Change management as enabler and support
The change management function aims to assist, enable and support people through the change process. The wellness of each staff member is important. Throughout the SUNStudent project, we prepare people for project activities, collect feedback, and then use it to align people's needs with project requirements. This also includes knowledge-sharing sessions, institutional communication, training and coaching, among others.
The change support network depicted below indicates the different support roles for the SUNStudent project.
Why does Stellenbosch University embrace change management?
The importance of making change management an integral part of our SUNStudent system implementation project cannot be underestimated. From the outset, we realised that the success of the SUNStudent project would be determined by the level of uptake by the end users, namely our staff and students. Our Eiffel Corp change management consultants have embarked on an exciting system implementation journey with us to ensure that the primary stakeholders assume co-ownership of the project from the very start through active participation and engagement. We believe that our staff should participate in the creation phase, which consists of change management sessions as well as the blueprint workshops and iterative sign-off process, and should then be capacitated, equipped and empowered to start rolling out the new system, knowing that their fears of the unknown will be acknowledged, supported and, in the end, allayed.
SUNStudent project sponsor
Dr Ronel Retief