Project manager or change manager? Who should be managing organizational change?
Date of this Version
Projects are an increasingly popular approach to instituting organizational change. But do project managers possess the skills needed to realize significant change? This paper examines a survey of 134 project professionals who have participated in organizational change projects to determine the competencies needed to manage change projects. In doing so, it looks at how behavior influences organizational change efforts, noting the interventions which organizations must perform to change personnel behaviors. It overviews the literature of using projects and programs to realize organizational change, pointing out the practical shortcomings of project and program managers. It defines the role of change manager, noting how this role differs from the roles played by project and program managers. It then describes the nature of the change initiatives studied and discusses the study's findings, comparing the competencies needed to manage change with those listed in the literature review. It outlines the differences--in relation to role played, competencies required, and activities performed--between project, program, and change managers. It details the organizational factors that influence the process of implementing change, listing a change management process model and the steps involved in using it. It recommends a framework for improving change management decision making and suggests a change manager's key competencies and a change initiative's critical activities.