Recapturing your love of Change by delegating to Change AnalystsOct 15, 2023
We Change Managers love to sink our teeth into a change and be all things to all people. It often comes from a place of wanting to help and support and ensure success. But by jumping in to fill all the gaps and do it all yourself, you can burn out, blur the boundaries of what Change Management is and isn’t (both on your current project and future work), and rob your projects, leaders, and teams from building their own change leadership confidence and taking responsibility for the change success. Learning to delegate change delivery work is a great option. And a good place to practice is by delegating to a Change Analyst, if you’ve got one working on your change.
Now if you’re not sure of the difference between a Change Analyst and a Change Manager, check out my previous blog post on exactly this - click here to read. But in a nutshell, a Change Analyst is someone newer and more junior in Change Management who often wants to learn and really develop their craft and hone their skills.
I’ve worked with Change Analysts in my team, but not necessarily Change Analysts on my changes because I’ve tended to be the sole practitioner on a change. But when I’ve worked with people who are newer to Change or more junior in Change, such as Comms Leads or Training Leads on the project that I’m coaching into their role to support the change, I take a real capability build approach as though I was delegating to a Change Analyst. I want to teach them, guide them, and lead them how to do what I do. I'll often give them the framework, then have them go off and have a go at it, come back and provide feedback.
Step 1: The Framework
Give the context, the framework, the general instruction because junior people often want a bit more direction and may not know what they’re doing necessarily, especially if they’re new to Change Management or the role they’re playing supporting the change. Sometimes if somebody's super savvy and willing to jump in and you think they’re confident enough, you could just go, "Go take a stab at it and then let's have a chat." If they're not, take more of a prescriptive approach where you're like, "Here's what we need to achieve. Here are some ways of approaching it. Go off and do it." It’s achieving through others, and coaching the next generation. And if they really need your support, you could offer to workshop it with them - you’ve just got to make sure you don't take over (something even I struggle with!).
Step 2: The Feedback
So once they’ve gone off and done the thing, then have them come back and talk through how they went about it, and give positive and constructive feedback. It takes much longer than if you were to do it yourself. But think about it this way. If you’re experienced in Change and especially if you’re a day rate contractor, you are probably going to leave at some point. So you are paving the way for them to have that capability and skill for the future when you are not there.
Step 3: The Follow Through
You are also protecting the change success because a lot of Change Management contractors do everything and then they exit. The business never built the capability, the business never built the skill, the business never came on the journey, and don't feel empowered in any way, shape, or form. And so as soon as the contractor leaves, it all unwinds. And that's not the outcome of Change. Change is all about realising the business benefits in the short term and the long term. You truly believe in that. You have to be able to take that capability/coaching approach to your Change Analysts or those people in the project or business teams who do not have any Change experience or exposure at all.
When you start to coach Change capability, delegate change delivery, and achieve through others, it can help you remember what you love about Change Management. How you lead change is your choice, and what you do and don’t do is your choice, too. For some projects you might just say, “I'm just going to be a delivery person. I'm just going to deliver, deliver, deliver, and get it done.” For others, you might be like, “I'm going to coach more in this role.” Because coaching, like Change Management, is a transferable skill that you can use in any job, any company, any industry, any country.
If you’re a seasoned Change Manager and would love more ideas on how to get more joy out of the work we do, come along to my free Live Workshop + Q&A this Wednesday October 18 @ 5pm (New York) / Thursday October 19 @ 8am (Sydney). Fulfillment and balance in your career and life is a BIG part of what I teach.
And if you’re a newbie to Change or an aspiring Changie - sometimes you won’t always have a Change Manager with the time or capacity or desire to coach you on the job, so definitely come along to my Live Workshop + Q&A as well and learn how to do change delivery for yourself.
The Live Workshop is part of my free Change Tools Masterclass and I’ll be going deeper AND answering all your questions on the live session held via Zoom. If you can’t join us live, a replay will be provided for a super limited time but only to registered attendees.
P.S. If you've already registered for my free Change Tools Masterclass, the Zoom link is coming to your Masterclass VIP Concierge Page and you should have the calendar invite in your inbox - you are ready to rock for our live session this week!
P.P.S. Super soon I'll be opening up the invitation period of my October 2023 Group Cohort for my Leading Successful Change program. Stay tuned!
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