“Change is the only constant in life.” — Heraclitus
Embracing and mastering change management is one of the great skills you can learn in life. By learning change management frameworks, you will learn how to play the game of change at a higher level with skill.
Change is an inevitable part of any organization, but it can be a daunting and sometimes painful process.
Without adoption there is no change. And without change, there is no value of new technology or solutions.
The value is in the change.
Only users change behavior, can you actually realize the benefits.
As someone who has led change efforts at Microsoft for several years and worked in startups within the company, I have experienced the challenges that come with transition and transformation.
I found change especially difficult in the early years, but with experience, skills, and a comprehensive toolbox, it became much easier to lead change and anticipate the potential obstacles.
In this article, I will share with you the 10 best change management frameworks that can help you successfully navigate through any change initiative.
Top 10 Change Management Frameworks
Here is a summary of the top 10 change management frameworks followed by explanations below:
- ADKAR: A model that focuses on individual change, emphasizing awareness, desire, knowledge, ability, and reinforcement.
- Appreciative Inquiry: An approach to organizational development that focuses on identifying and building on an organization’s strengths to create positive change.
- Bridges’ Transition Model: A framework that emphasizes the emotional and psychological aspects of change, focusing on three stages: ending, neutral zone, and new beginning.
- Deming Cycle (PDCA): The Deming Cycle, or PDCA (Plan, Do, Check, Act), is a four-step model for continuous improvement that involves planning, implementing, evaluating, and adjusting processes to achieve better outcomes.
- Influencer Change Model: The Influencer Change Model is a framework for achieving significant and sustainable changes in behavior or performance by addressing six sources of influence: Personal Motivation, Personal Ability, Social Motivation, Social Ability, Structural Motivation, and Structural Ability.
- Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model: A framework that emphasizes the importance of creating urgency, building a coalition of supporters, and establishing a vision for change.
- Lewin’s Change Management Model: A classic model that involves three stages of change: unfreeze, change, and refreeze.
- McKinsey 7-S Model: A holistic framework that looks at seven interconnected elements of an organization: strategy, structure, systems, shared values, skills, style, and staff.
- Six Boxes Model: A comprehensive framework that organizes human behavior influences into six “boxes”.
- STARs Model: The STARs model is a framework for effective leadership transition and business transformations that involves five key classifications to describe the situations of people, processes, and products: Startup, Turnaround, Realignment and Sustaining Success.
Let’s walk through each change management framework / model so that you can get the main idea of each one…
What I like about Prosci is that it provides a clear and straightforward journey for change wrapped around individual behavior change. Org change is still individual change at its basic unit.
The ADKAR model is a popular change management framework used to guide individuals through the change process. The framework was developed by Jeff Hiatt, founder of Prosci, a change management consultancy firm.
The ADKAR model consists of five stages that individuals must progress through to successfully adapt to change:
- Awareness: The individual must be aware of the need for change and understand the implications of not changing. This stage emphasizes the importance of effective communication to build awareness and understanding of the reasons behind the change.
- Desire: The individual must have the desire and motivation to support the change. This stage focuses on building engagement and commitment among individuals to support the change.
- Knowledge: The individual must have the knowledge and skills to implement the change. This stage involves providing the necessary training, resources, and support to enable individuals to make the change successfully.
- Ability: The individual must have the ability to implement the change. This stage involves ensuring that the individual has the necessary tools and resources to make the change, and providing ongoing support and feedback to reinforce the new behaviors and practices.
- Reinforcement: The individual must be able to sustain the change over time. This stage involves providing ongoing support and reinforcement to ensure that the new behaviors and practices become embedded and sustainable.
The ADKAR model is a useful tool for managing change at the individual level because it provides a structured approach for addressing the different stages of change.
By focusing on building awareness, desire, knowledge, ability, and reinforcement, organizations can help individuals successfully adapt to change and achieve their goals.
See ADKAR is a Simple Model for Change.
#2. Appreciative Inquiry
Appreciative inquiry is an approach to organizational development that focuses on identifying and building on an organization’s strengths, rather than solely addressing weaknesses or problems.
It involves a collaborative and positive inquiry process that encourages individuals and teams to reflect on past successes and envision a desired future.
The process typically involves a series of structured interviews, group discussions, and other activities designed to foster a culture of positivity, collaboration, and innovation.
Here is a general step-by-step process for conducting an appreciative inquiry:
- Define the Focus: Begin by identifying the topic or issue that will be the focus of the inquiry. This could be a specific project, department, or organizational culture.
- Discovery: In this stage, the focus is on exploring and discovering the best of what currently exists. This involves asking questions that elicit stories, experiences, and examples of when things worked well in the past. It is important to create a positive and safe space where people can share openly and honestly.
- Dream: In this stage, the focus shifts to envisioning what the ideal future would look like. This involves creating a shared vision and setting ambitious goals that inspire and motivate individuals and teams. Participants are encouraged to think outside the box and push beyond perceived limitations.
- Design: In this stage, the focus is on designing and planning the steps needed to achieve the ideal future. This involves identifying the resources, skills, and tools needed to turn the vision into reality. Participants are encouraged to think creatively and collaboratively to identify potential solutions.
- Delivery: In this stage, the focus shifts to implementing the plan and taking action to achieve the desired outcomes. This involves setting clear goals, timelines, and metrics for success, and assigning accountability and responsibility to individuals and teams.
- Destiny: In this final stage, the focus is on sustaining and building on the progress made. This involves creating a culture of continuous improvement, learning, and celebration of successes. The emphasis is on embedding the positive changes and making them part of the organization’s DNA.
By focusing on what is working well and building on those strengths, organizations can create positive change and achieve their goals in a more sustainable and empowering way.
See What is Appreciative Inquiry.
#3. Bridges’ Transition Model
Bridges’ Transition Model is a change management framework that focuses on the emotional and psychological aspects of transitions. The model was developed by William Bridges, a consultant and author who studied transitions in various organizations and contexts.
The Bridges’ Transition Model identifies three stages of a transition:
- Endings: The first stage involves letting go of the old way of doing things. This can involve feelings of loss, grief, and uncertainty as individuals adjust to the change.
- Neutral Zone: The second stage involves a period of uncertainty and experimentation as individuals try to find their footing in the new situation. This can be a challenging and uncomfortable time, but it also provides opportunities for learning and growth.
- New Beginnings: The third stage involves establishing new routines and ways of doing things. This stage is characterized by a sense of renewal and excitement as individuals begin to see the benefits of the change.
I find Bridge’s Transition Model useful in terms of understanding and managing the emotional and psychological aspects of change.
Unlike many change management frameworks, which focus primarily on the technical or logistical aspects of change, Bridges’ Transition Model recognizes that individuals may experience a range of emotions during a transition, and that these emotions can impact their ability to adapt to the change.
#4. Deming Cycle (PDCA)
The Deming Cycle can be useful for testing changes and learning at a smaller scale, before rolling out on a broader scale.
The Deming Cycle, also known as the PDCA cycle, is a continuous improvement framework used in quality management and process improvement. It was developed by W. Edwards Deming, a prominent quality management expert who is often credited with helping to transform Japanese industry after World War II.
The Deming Cycle consists of four stages:
- Plan: The first stage involves planning and defining the problem or opportunity for improvement. This stage includes setting goals, defining the scope of the problem, and identifying potential solutions.
- Do: The second stage involves implementing the plan and testing the proposed solutions. This stage may involve creating pilot projects, conducting experiments, or implementing small-scale changes.
- Check: The third stage involves evaluating the results of the implemented solutions and assessing their effectiveness. This stage involves measuring key performance indicators, analyzing data, and identifying areas for improvement.
- Act: The fourth stage involves taking action based on the results of the evaluation. This may involve making further improvements, standardizing the new process or solution, or starting the cycle over again to address new problems or opportunities.
The Deming Cycle is a useful tool for continuous improvement because it provides a structured approach to problem-solving and encourages a data-driven, evidence-based approach to decision-making.
By following the PDCA cycle, organizations can identify and address problems more efficiently and effectively, leading to improved performance and outcomes over time.
#5. Influencer Change Model
The Influencer Change Model is a framework for achieving significant and sustainable changes in behavior or performance within organizations or communities.
It is based on six sources of influence:
- Personal Motivation
- Personal Ability
- Social Motivation
- Social Ability
- Structural Motivation
- Structural Ability
The model emphasizes the importance of identifying and addressing all six sources of influence to create lasting change. It also emphasizes the use of positive reinforcement and social support to encourage and sustain desired behaviors.
The Influencer Change Model can be used in a variety of settings, from individual behavior change to large-scale organizational change initiatives, and can be applied to a wide range of challenges, from improving safety and health outcomes to enhancing team performance and productivity.
For more on the Influencer Change Model see The Six Sources of Influence Model — A Powerful Model for Change.
#6. Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model
Whether you use it in whole or in part, I find Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model to incredibly useful from a strategic, practical, and tactical perspective.
What makes it so powerful is the idea of creating an inspiring vision for change, creating a sense of urgency, and getting people to participate in the change while building small wins towards the North Star.
Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model is a change management framework developed by John Kotter, a Harvard Business School professor and leading expert in organizational change.
The model provides a structured approach to managing change within organizations and has been widely adopted by businesses, governments, and non-profit organizations.
The 8 steps of Kotter’s Change Model are:
- Establish a sense of urgency: This involves creating a compelling reason for change and building a sense of urgency among stakeholders.
- Form a powerful coalition: This involves building a team of key stakeholders who can help to drive the change process forward.
- Create a vision for change: This involves developing a clear and inspiring vision for the future that can help to guide the change process.
- Communicate the vision: This involves communicating the vision for change to all stakeholders and ensuring that everyone understands the purpose and goals of the change effort.
- Empower others to act on the vision: This involves creating a culture of empowerment and giving individuals the tools and resources they need to take action and implement the change.
- Create short-term wins: This involves identifying and celebrating early successes to build momentum and demonstrate the effectiveness of the change effort.
- Consolidate gains and produce more change: This involves using the early successes to build on and expand the change effort, and to make further improvements.
- Anchor new approaches in the organization’s culture: This involves embedding the new approaches into the organization’s culture and systems to ensure that the changes are sustainable over the long term.
The 8-Step Change Model provides a comprehensive and practical framework for managing change within organizations.
By following these steps, organizations can build a sense of urgency and momentum, engage stakeholders and employees, and create lasting change that improves performance and outcomes over time.
#7. Lewin’s Change Management Model
Lewin’s Change Management Model, also known as the “Unfreeze-Change-Refreeze” model, is a three-stage framework for managing change within organizations. It was developed by Kurt Lewin, a psychologist who is considered one of the founding fathers of social psychology.
The three stages of Lewin’s Change Management Model are:
- Unfreeze: The first stage involves creating a sense of dissatisfaction with the current state of affairs, in order to motivate individuals and organizations to embrace change. This may involve communicating the need for change, highlighting the problems or challenges with the current state, and creating a sense of urgency around the need for change.
- Change: The second stage involves implementing the change itself. This may involve developing and testing new processes or procedures, reorganizing the structure of the organization, or introducing new technologies or tools. This stage may also involve providing training or support to employees to help them adapt to the change.
- Refreeze: The third stage involves stabilizing the new state of affairs and embedding the changes into the culture and systems of the organization. This may involve creating new policies or procedures to support the change, providing ongoing training and support, and celebrating early successes to reinforce the new behaviors and practices.
Lewin’s Change Management Model is a useful framework for managing change within organizations because it emphasizes the importance of addressing the psychological and emotional aspects of change.
By creating a sense of dissatisfaction with the current state, organizations can motivate individuals to embrace change and work towards a better future.
By implementing the change in a structured and supportive way, organizations can help individuals adapt to the new state of affairs and ensure that the changes are sustainable over the long term.
#8. McKinsey 7-S Model
The McKinsey 7-S Model is a management framework developed by consulting firm McKinsey & Company. The model is used to analyze and improve organizational performance by focusing on seven interrelated elements of an organization. These elements are:
- Strategy: The organization’s plan for achieving its goals, including its approach to competitive positioning, growth, and innovation.
- Structure: The organization’s formal and informal systems, including its hierarchy, reporting relationships, and decision-making processes.
- Systems: The organization’s policies, procedures, and processes, including its technology and information systems.
- Shared Values: The organization’s culture and core values, including its beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors.
- Skills: The organization’s capabilities and competencies, including its workforce skills and knowledge.
- Staff: The organization’s workforce, including its size, composition, and diversity.
- Style: The leadership style and management practices used within the organization, including communication, decision-making, and conflict resolution.
The McKinsey 7-S Model emphasizes the interrelatedness of these elements and the importance of considering them together when analyzing or improving organizational performance.
Hard Elements vs. Soft Elements in the 7-S Model
The McKinsey 7-S Model includes both hard elements and soft elements. Hard elements are tangible and easier to define, while soft elements are more abstract and harder to define.
Hard elements include strategy, structure, and systems. Soft elements include shared values, skills, staff, and style. The distinction between hard elements and soft elements is important because it highlights the fact that organizational performance is influenced by a combination of tangible and intangible factors.
While hard elements are often easier to measure and quantify, soft elements such as culture and leadership style can also have a significant impact on organizational performance.
#9. Six Boxes Model
The Six Boxes Model is a comprehensive framework for understanding and improving human performance in organizations. It helps performance professionals, managers, and leaders improve individual and organizational performance by ensuring that all necessary factors are in place for individuals to perform at their best.
Here is how Performance Thinking explains the Six Boxes Model:
“Behavior influences comprise the enablers of human performance. The Six Boxes Model is a comprehensive categorization of these influences, based on over 60 years of basic behavior science, simplified into six easy-to-remember ‘boxes.’
We use this plain English model to teach leaders, managers, and performance professionals how to think systemically when identifying factors that currently enable or obstruct behavior, when planning for new behavior or programs, and when working on continuous improvement or development.
It allows us to coordinate all behavior influences for maximum impact.”
Here are the six “boxes” or key factors that influence behavior and performance:
- Expectations & Feedback: This box refers to the expectations that individuals have for their performance and the feedback they receive on their performance. It includes elements such as goal-setting, feedback mechanisms, and communication of expectations.
- Tools & Resources: This box refers to the tools, resources, and equipment that individuals need to perform their jobs effectively. It includes elements such as technology, equipment, and materials.
- Consequences & Incentives: This box refers to the consequences and incentives that are associated with performance. It includes elements such as rewards, recognition, and consequences for poor performance.
- Skills & Knowledge: This box refers to the skills and knowledge that individuals need to perform their jobs effectively. It includes elements such as training, education, and development opportunities.
- Select & Assignment (capacity): This box refers to the capacity of individuals to perform their jobs effectively, including their availability, workload, and work assignments. It includes elements such as workload management, staffing, and scheduling.
- Motives & Preferences (attitude): This box refers to the attitudes, values, and motivations that drive individual behavior. It includes elements such as employee engagement, motivation, and alignment with organizational values.
By considering all six boxes in a coordinated and systematic way, leaders can identify and address the factors that influence behavior and performance, and make targeted improvements that lead to better outcomes.
You can find out more about the Six Boxes Model at Six Boxes Performance Thinking.
#10. STARs Model
The STARs framework is a tool presented in the book “The First 90 Days” by Michael Watkins, which is a guide for leaders navigating a transition into a new role or organization.
The framework is designed to help leaders identify the key challenges they will face during the transition and develop a plan to address them.
STARs stands for:
- Start-up: This phase involves getting up to speed quickly, establishing relationships, and learning about the organization’s culture and key stakeholders.
- Turnaround: This phase involves diagnosing and addressing any immediate problems or issues in the organization, such as financial or operational challenges.
- Accelerated growth: This phase involves identifying opportunities for growth and innovation, developing a strategy to capitalize on those opportunities, and building the necessary capabilities within the organization to execute on the strategy.
- Realignment: This phase involves adjusting the organization’s strategy and structure to better align with changing market or competitive conditions.
- Sustaining success: This phase involves maintaining the organization’s momentum and continuing to drive growth and innovation over the long term.
I’ve found the STARs framework especially useful for getting people on the same page in terms of changes. If you think your product is a realignment challenge, but your boss thinks it’s an Accelerated growth phase, you have a challenge. The key is that you can review your people, processes, and products in terms of the STARs model.
Additional Change Frameworks / Models
Here are some additional frameworks and models that I’ve found helpful. Sometimes it helps to see a really simple model or just a different lens or pivot on a situation to gain better insights and better perspective.
These frameworks and models can help you structured your approach to change management as well as identify key drivers of change, assess readiness for change, and implement change initiatives in a more systematic and effective way.
4 Barriers to Organizational Learning and Change
According to Otto Scharmer, 4 learning barriers keep the system locked in its current state:
- Not recognizing what you see (decoupling perception and thought)
- Not saying what you think (decoupling thinking and talking)
- Not doing what you say (decoupling talking and “walking”)
- Not seeing what you do (decoupling perception and action)
These 4 barriers are a powerful force for reproducing the patterns of the past. It is a force that individuals oten view as impossible to change.
The first step is to learn to “stop downloading.” This applies to all areas: individuals, groups, organizations, and even societies. Learning to stop downloading is the precondition for entering the U process. (See Theory U below)
Only when the downloading ends can we wake up, see the reality, and become aware–which brings us to the next cognitive space: seeing.
4 Cs that Limit Change
I found this to be a useful model for remembering what gets in the way of change:
- Complacency: Complacency is a feeling of satisfaction or contentment with the status quo, which can prevent individuals and organizations from recognizing the need for change.
- Cynicism: Cynicism is a belief that change is not possible or that efforts to change will not be effective, which can lead to resistance and a lack of engagement in the change process.
- Confusion: Confusion is a lack of clarity or understanding about what needs to change or how to change, which can create barriers to taking action and making progress.
- Constraints: Constraints are external factors that limit an organization’s ability to change, such as resource limitations, regulatory requirements, or cultural norms.
5 Stages of Grief
The Kübler-Ross model, also known as the Five Stages of Grief, is a framework that outlines the emotional and psychological stages that individuals typically experience when faced with a significant loss or change.
The model was developed by psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book On Death and Dying, which was based on her work with terminally ill patients.
The five stages of the Kübler-Ross model are:
- Denial: the individual initially denies the reality of the loss or change, and may feel shock, numbness, or disbelief.
- Anger: As the reality of the loss sets in, the individual may feel angry, resentful, or frustrated.
- Bargaining: The individual may attempt to negotiate or make deals to reverse or minimize the impact of the loss.
- Depression: The individual may feel overwhelmed, sad, or hopeless about the loss or change.
- Acceptance: The individual comes to terms with the loss and begins to adjust to the new reality.
It’s important to note that the Kübler-Ross model is not a strict or linear process, and individuals may move through the stages in different ways or at different paces.
Additionally, the model has been criticized for oversimplifying the complex experience of grief and for not accounting for cultural or individual differences in grieving processes.
The ACMP Standard refers to the standard set forth by the Association of Change Management Professionals (ACMP) for the practice of change management.
The ACMP Standard defines the best practices and processes for managing change across an organization, including the roles and responsibilities of change management practitioners, the phases of the change management process, and the tools and techniques used to manage change.
The ACMP Standard for Change Management separates the change effort into five major areas that are:
- Evaluate the Change Impact and Organizational Readiness
- Formulate the Change Management Strategy
- Develop the Change Management Plan
- Execute the Change Management Plan
- Closing the Change Management Effort
The ACMP Standard emphasizes the importance of continuous improvement and learning throughout the change management process, and encourages practitioners to adapt and tailor their approach based on the specific needs and context of the organization and change initiative.
The adoption curve, also known as the technology adoption lifecycle, is a model that describes the process by which new products or technologies are adopted by consumers. The model divides consumers into five categories based on their adoption behavior:
- Innovators: The first group to adopt new products or technologies. They are risk-takers and enjoy trying new things.
- Early adopters: The second group to adopt new products or technologies. They are opinion leaders and are respected by their peers for their knowledge and expertise.
- Early majority: The third group to adopt new products or technologies. They are pragmatic and are more likely to adopt products or technologies that have been proven to be effective.
- Late majority: The fourth group to adopt new products or technologies. They are skeptical and tend to adopt products or technologies only when they are widely accepted by others.
- Laggards: The final group to adopt new products or technologies. They are resistant to change and tend to adopt new products or technologies only when they are forced to do so.
The adoption curve is often used by marketers and product developers to identify the characteristics of different consumer groups and tailor their marketing and development strategies accordingly.
By understanding the needs and behavior of each group, they can design products and marketing campaigns that are more likely to be successful.
The Burke-Litwin Model is a change management framework developed by George H. Litwin and W. Warner Burke in the 1990s.
It is based on the premise that organizations are complex systems that are influenced by a range of internal and external factors, and that change in one area of the system can have ripple effects throughout the organization.
The Burke-Litwin Model consists of 12 key dimensions or factors that contribute to organizational performance, arranged in two groups:
- External Environment: The loop commences with the external environment which generates the demand for change, for instance, changes in technology, fluctuations in social trends, and economic downturns.
These are the core elements of an organization’s strategy, culture, and leadership.
- Mission & Strategy: Mission and Strategy refers to the fundamental reason for the organization’s existence, as perceived by its employees.
- Leadership: Leadership encompasses the attitudes, principles, and beliefs of the top management.
- Organizational Culture: Organizational Culture is the shared set of values and behavioral norms that are embraced and anticipated within the organization.
These are the day-to-day operations and processes that enable an organization to function effectively
- Structure: Structure refers to the organization’s arrangement in terms of job responsibilities and functions, communication channels, decision-making authority, and reporting lines.
- Systems: Systems encompass the processes and procedures that support the organization’s operations.
- Management Practices: Management Practices denote how managers and individuals in positions of power execute the organization’s strategy on a day-to-day basis.
- Work Climate: Work Climate is the overall attitude and morale of the employees working within the organization.
- Task and Individual Skills: Task and Individual Skills involve assessing the level of compatibility between job requirements and employees’ skill sets.
- Individual Needs and Values: Individual Needs and Values consider whether the organization’s processes and systems fulfill the employees’ needs, allowing them to feel satisfied.
- Motivation: Motivation refers to the intrinsic and extrinsic factors that drive consistent high performance.
- Individual and Organizational Performance: The effectiveness of a change is measured by its impact on performance and how it affects the external environment, creating a loop. As the output changes, the input and change factors also change, reinforcing the notion that change is constant.
The Burke-Litwin Model emphasizes the importance of understanding the interrelationships between these factors, and how changes in one area can impact other areas of the organization.
One of my early mentors at Microsoft showed me this framework to help me understand complexity and how to navigate complex change.
The Cynefin Framework is a sense-making model that helps individuals and organizations understand complex systems and environments.
The model was developed by Welsh scholar Dave Snowden and is based on his work in the field of knowledge management.
The Cynefin Framework consists of five domains:
- Simple: Where the relationship between cause and effect is clear and obvious.
- Complicated: Where the relationship between cause and effect requires expert knowledge or analysis.
- Complex: Where the relationship between cause and effect can only be understood in retrospect.
- Chaotic: Where there is no relationship between cause and effect.
- Disorder: Where it is unclear which of the other four domains apply.
The Cynefin Framework emphasizes the importance of understanding the context in which decisions are made, and provides a tool for determining the appropriate course of action based on the complexity of the situation.
The model has been applied in a variety of settings, from business strategy to disaster response, and has proven to be a useful framework for making sense of complex and uncertain environments.
For more information on the Cynefin Framework, see Cynefin Framework: How To Choose Between Pattern-Based Leadership vs. Fact-Based Management.
Innovation Decision Process
The innovation decision process is a framework used to describe the various stages that individuals and organizations go through when adopting a new innovation or technology.
The process was first introduced by Everett Rogers in his book Diffusion of Innovations, and it includes five stages:
- Knowledge: The first stage is when individuals or organizations become aware of an innovation and gain an understanding of how it works.
- Persuasion: The second stage involves individuals or organizations actively seeking information about the innovation and weighing the potential benefits and drawbacks of adopting it.
- Decision: The third stage is when individuals or organizations make a decision to adopt or reject the innovation.
- Implementation: The fourth stage involves individuals or organizations putting the innovation into practice and integrating it into their work or daily lives.
- Confirmation: The final stage is when individuals or organizations evaluate the effectiveness of the innovation and decide whether to continue using it or not.
The innovation decision process emphasizes that the adoption of new innovations is not a simple or linear process, but rather a complex and dynamic one that is influenced by a variety of factors.
By understanding the different stages of the process and the factors that influence them, innovators and change agents can more effectively introduce and promote new innovations.
Knowledge, Attitudes, Practices
Knowledge, Attitudes, Practices (KAP) is a model used to understand and assess people’s behaviors related to a particular topic or issue. It involves examining three key components:
- Knowledge: The information and understanding that individuals have about the topic or issue. This includes their awareness of the problem, the causes, and potential solutions.
- Attitudes: The beliefs, values, and emotions that individuals hold about the topic or issue. This includes their perception of the problem, their motivation to change, and their level of engagement.
- Practices: The behaviors and actions that individuals undertake related to the topic or issue. This includes their current practices, their willingness to change, and the factors that influence their behavior.
By understanding these three components, the KAP model can help organizations and individuals develop targeted interventions to promote behavior change and improve outcomes.
The KAP model has been used in various fields, including public health, environmental sustainability, and education, to assess and improve people’s behaviors and practices related to a particular issue.
Knowledge, Skills, Abilities (KSAs)
“Knowledge, skills, and abilities” (often abbreviated as KSA) is a framework used in human resource management to describe the various qualities and characteristics that are necessary for success in a particular role or job.
Each of these three components represents a different aspect of a person’s qualifications:
- Knowledge: Refers to the theoretical or factual understanding of a particular subject matter or domain, often gained through education or training.
- Skills: Refers to the practical or technical abilities needed to perform specific tasks or activities, often developed through hands-on experience.
- Abilities: Refers to innate or natural talents or aptitudes that enable individuals to perform certain tasks or activities more easily or effectively than others.
The KSA framework is commonly used in job descriptions and assessments to help identify and evaluate candidates who have the necessary knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform a job successfully.
It can also be used as a tool for individual development, helping individuals to identify areas of strength and weakness and work on developing their knowledge, skills, and abilities for future success.
LaMarsh Change Model
The LaMarsh model is a change management framework that provides a structured approach to managing organizational change.
The model was developed by Canadian consultant Rick Maurer and is based on the work of Canadian consultant and author William Bridges.
Here are the main components of the model:
- Identify the Change
- Prepare to Change
- Change Agent
- Plan the Change
- Implement the Change
- Sustain the Change
Nudge Theory is a model that uses subtle, non-coercive interventions to encourage people to change their behavior.
Nudge theory was developed by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein, two prominent economists and academics. Thaler and Sunstein published a book in 2008 titled “Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness” which presented the concept of nudge theory and its applications in various settings.
The book argues that individuals do not always make rational decisions and are often influenced by biases and heuristics that can lead to suboptimal outcomes.
By using nudges, which are small, low-cost interventions that encourage individuals to make better decisions without restricting their choices, organizations and policymakers can help individuals achieve better outcomes while still respecting their autonomy.
To apply nudge theory to organizational change, the following principles are typically followed:
- Define changes: Clearly define the changes that are desired, and articulate the reasons why the changes are needed.
- Consider employee point of view: Consider how the changes will be perceived by employees, and try to anticipate any concerns or objections they may have.
- Provide evidence to show the best options: Provide evidence to support the changes and to demonstrate that they are the best options available.
- Present change as a choice: Rather than forcing employees to change, present the change as a choice and highlight the benefits of making the change.
- Listen to employee feedback: Encourage employees to provide feedback and suggestions about the change, and take this feedback into account when making decisions.
- Limit options: Provide a limited set of options to encourage employees to choose the desired option.
- Solidify change with short-term wins: Celebrate early successes and provide positive feedback to reinforce the changes.
By using nudge theory to encourage change, organizations can create a more positive and collaborative environment where employees are more likely to accept and support the change.
This approach helps to reduce resistance to change by allowing employees to see the need for change for themselves and influence how it is made.
Prochaska’s Stages of Change
Prochaska’s Model of Change, also known as the Transtheoretical Model, is a psychological framework for understanding and managing behavior change.
The model proposes that behavior change occurs in stages, and individuals move through these stages in a cyclical and dynamic process. The stages of change are:
- Precontemplation: In this stage, individuals are not yet considering behavior change and may not be aware that they have a problem.
- Contemplation: In the contemplation stage, individuals are aware that they have a problem and are considering whether to change their behavior. They may be weighing the pros and cons of change and may feel ambivalent.
- Preparation: In the preparation stage, individuals are getting ready to make a change and may be taking small steps toward behavior change. They may be seeking information, setting goals, or making plans.
- Action: The action stage is when individuals start to make significant changes in their behavior. They may be implementing new strategies, seeking support, or modifying their environment to support their new behavior.
- Maintenance: The maintenance stage is when individuals work to sustain the changes they have made and prevent relapse. They may be developing new habits, seeking support, or monitoring their progress.
- Termination: The termination stage is when individuals have fully integrated the behavior change into their lives and no longer need to actively work to maintain it.
The Prochaska Model of Change emphasizes the importance of recognizing and addressing the various stages of behavior change to promote success.
By understanding where individuals are in the process, change agents can provide appropriate support and interventions to facilitate progress and prevent relapse.
The Performance Chain
The Performance Chain model works hand-in-hand with the Six Boxes Model outlined above.
As Performance Thinking puts it:
“In order to improve human performance, we must first describe it clearly. The Performance Chain represents the anatomy of performance and provides the tool to link what people do to what the organization wants to achieve.”
The Performance Chain model emphasizes that human performance is not just about how people do things (behavior), but also what they produce (outputs).
While most programs focus on improving behavior, the Performance Chain keeps the focus on the outputs that create value for the organization.
Outputs are the work products that the organization needs from its people to achieve its goals and are the links between the behavior or activity of people and results.
Here are the key components of the Performance Chain:
- Behavior Influence
- Reward & Recognition
- Team Design
- Goal Setting
- Job Aids
- Workflow Design
- Work Outputs
- People who do or produce…
- Teams that…
- Business Results
- Product Sales
- Employee Engagement
- Shareholder Value
- Market Share
By understanding the relationship between activity and results, the Performance Chain aligns people with the mission and goals of the organization, and helps executives, managers, HR, training, and process improvement teams to generate the highest returns on their investments in improving or changing performance.
Analyzing the Performance Chain is a fundamental element of performance thinking, and can be learned and applied by anyone, at any level and in any function, to accelerate results and maximize employee engagement.
By clarifying the Performance Chain, organizations can improve their understanding of what factors contribute to individual and organizational performance, and how to align those factors to achieve better results.
For more information on the Performance Chain see, https://www.sixboxes.com/Performance-Chain.html.
Satir Change Model
The Satir Change Model is a psychological framework for managing change that focuses on the emotional reactions of individuals and groups to change, and the stages they go through as they adjust to new circumstances.
The model consists of five stages:
- Late Status Quo: In this stage, individuals or groups are comfortable with the existing situation and may resist or avoid any attempts to change it.
- Chaos: The chaos stage is characterized by confusion, uncertainty, and a feeling of being lost. Individuals may experience anxiety, fear, or frustration as they face the unknown.
- Transforming Idea: In this stage, individuals or groups begin to develop new ideas or solutions for the change. They may start to see the potential benefits of the change and become more open to it.
- New Status Quo: The new status quo stage is when the change is fully implemented, and individuals or groups begin to adapt to the new situation. They may start to feel more comfortable and confident in the new environment.
- Integration: The final stage of the Satir Change Model is integration, where individuals or groups fully integrate the change into their lives and work. They may start to see the benefits of the change and become advocates for it.
The Satir Change Model emphasizes the importance of addressing the emotional reactions that individuals and groups may experience during change.
By acknowledging and addressing these emotions, change leaders can help individuals and groups move through the stages of the model more effectively and achieve better outcomes.
Theory U is a framework for change and leadership developed by Otto Scharmer, a senior lecturer at MIT Sloan School of Management. The framework is based on the idea that in order to create meaningful and sustainable change in organizations and communities, individuals must first undergo a process of personal and collective transformation.
Otto Scharmer’s framework involves seven stages of the innovation process, which are:
- Downloading: The first stage involves accessing and using existing knowledge and information, which may be limited by one’s own biases and assumptions.
- Seeing: The second stage involves expanding one’s perspective and seeing things in a new way, by exploring diverse viewpoints and considering multiple perspectives.
- Sensing: The third stage involves tuning into one’s own intuition and inner wisdom, by becoming more aware of one’s own thoughts, emotions, and physical sensations.
- Presencing: The fourth stage involves fully immersing oneself in the present moment, by letting go of past patterns and future expectations and accessing a deeper source of creativity and insight.
- Crystalizing: The fifth stage involves bringing emerging insights and ideas into focus, by articulating them in a clear and concise way and developing a shared understanding with others.
- Prototyping: The sixth stage involves testing new ideas and solutions, by experimenting with different approaches and iterating based on feedback and results.
- Performing: The final stage involves implementing and integrating new ideas and solutions, by embedding them into organizational systems and processes and creating sustainable change.
Scharmer’s framework emphasizes the importance of deep listening, empathy, and self-awareness in the innovation process, as well as the need to move beyond existing paradigms and structures to create truly transformative change.
Leading Through Change Better with Frameworks
Change is an inevitable part of organizational life, and the success of any change initiative depends on how effectively it is managed.
The 10 change management frameworks we’ve explored here offer a range of tools and techniques for guiding organizations through change and ensuring that stakeholders are engaged, informed, and supported along the way.
Whether you’re a manager, consultant, or change agent, these frameworks provide a valuable starting point for developing a strategic approach to change that can help your organization stay ahead of the curve in today’s fast-paced business environment.
By applying the principles of these frameworks with care and sensitivity, you can help your organization achieve its goals, build resilience, and thrive in the face of constant change.
- ACMP (Association of Change Management Professions): ACMP is a professional membership association dedicated to advancing the career growth of individuals and the effectiveness of organizations by advancing the discipline and practice of change management.
- Confident Change Management: Rob Bogue provides information and resources related to change management, including tips, tools, and training programs to help individuals and organizations manage change effectively and confidently.
- Fearless Change Patterns: Mary Lynn Manns and Linda Rising share a collection of patterns for change at all levels.
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