Distinguish between an internal and an external change agent. Give examples or explain particular circumstances where internal and external change agents have exercised successful change programs.
What Makes a Good Change Agent? The following article describes required capabilities of good change agents.
Due to the dynamics in the external environment, many organizations find themselves in nearly continuous change. The scope reaches from smaller change projects in particular sub business units up to corporation-wide transformation processes.
Unfortunately, not every change process leads to the expected results. There are multiple reasons for potential failure: Typical barriers to change are unexpected changes in the external conditions, a lack of commitment in implementation, resistance of people involved, or a lack of resources.
The implications of failed change projects go beyond missed objectives. More important is the negative symbolism and the de-motivation of people involved.
People within the change team may become dissatisfied with their own performance or with the lack of support they received. In the result, some of them will probably never again be willing to commit themselves to change initiatives. Similarly, people affected by the failed change effort will develop growing skepticism.
Different change projects require different capabilities of the change agent Depending on these factors, change agents either may need good project management capabilities in order to guarantee timely progress, or they should be good leaders with the ability to motivate people.
Jim Canterucci defines change leaders on five levels. Although he mainly focuses on leadership capabilities and qualifications, his system can easily be transferred to change projects with varying importance.
The leader of an organization-wide restructuring project will need different capabilities than the one who is responsible for clearly defined project on departmental level. This requires a high competency as the basis for acceptance as well as soft skills, which are often summarized as emotional intelligence.
This includes the ability to communicate, to understand and to take into account opinions and doubts of others. Change projects involve a great variety of factors and forces.
These factors do not only comprise the reasons and objectives for change, but also the existing state of the organization, values, beliefs and routines of the people there.
Many change projects challenge the existing cultural framework of an organization. Efforts to change such lasting values, however, lead to resistance and denial.
More than in technology-related projects e. Buchanan und Boddy  have carried out a study on the perceived effectiveness of change agents.
On that basis, they compiled the fifteen most important competencies of change agents. These, too, are evidence for the importance of the soft factors: Sensitivity to changes in key personnel, top management perceptions and market conditions, and to the way in which these impact the goals of the project.
Setting of clearly defined, realistic goals. Flexibility in responding to changes without the control of the project manager, perhaps requiring major shifts in project goals and management style. Team-building abilities, to bring together key stakeholders and establish effective working groups, and to define and delegate respective responsibilities clearly.
Networking skills in establishing and maintaining appropriate contacts within and outside the organization. Tolerance of ambiguity, to be able to function comfortably, patiently and effectively in an uncertain environment.
Communication skills to transmit effectively to colleagues and subordinates the need for changes in the project goals and in individual tasks and responsibilities.So although a change agent can trigger growth in an organization, the culture in which they exist or are brought into has a huge bearing on their success.
If a school embodies itself as a true learning organization, change will happen much quicker.
It looks like you've lost connection to our server. Please check your internet connection or reload this page. change not evident to others, and it reduces normative constraints on how agents can use information to initiate changes that do not conform to prevailing institutional pressures.
Hypothesis 1: The richer in structural holes a change agent’s network, the more likely the agent is to initiate a change that diverges from the institutional status quo.
change agent working at the strategic level cannot be effective without them. Having a clearly articulated competency model for the change agent role is one thing; acquiring the knowledge and skills to function effectively in this role is another.
He has the needed accomplishments. knows how to enroll a powerful alteration squad to back up him. combines smartly the advantages of external and internal alteration agents. and has the bravery to truly drive grassroots change. including himself in the alteration procedure.
By the end of this session, you will be able to describe the roles and types of a change agent by using notes provided to you within 10 minutes.2/5(2).