Managing Change in the Workplace: A Practical Guide by Leslie Allan

If you’re interested in change management, you probably, like me, have a dozen or more books on your shelf, each dealing with a particular dimension of the change management process and none addressing the entire process. You also know that you will probably buy the next highly acclaimed book to be published as you search for that elusive “answer” that will produce the desired results of your change management initiatives.

This is why Leslie Allan’s book is a gift for executives, leaders, managers and supervisors who want to initiate a process of change in their organizations. It is a complete guide and true to its subtitle a very practical guide.

How many times have you heard the comment: Change doesn’t work? It is true that this is not the case for many people and organizations. This is not the case because change management initiatives are often poorly conceived, planned and implemented. It’s important to note at the outset that Leslie Allan believes that for change management initiatives to be successful in organizations, they must be led by the CEO, executives, and managers, not HR. Therefore, her book outlines a process these people can go through that provides the best possible guarantee that the change they want and need to implement will deliver the results they want.

The book is actually a workbook and that is why it is so valuable. He walks teams and their leaders through the entire change management process, from conception to implementation. It is not, however, the book to read chapter 1 and do chapter 1 and then go on to chapter 2. Rather it is a book that a change management team, with a commitment to reflective practice, could work on. as a group BEFORE starting a process of change in your organization. This would mean that the leadership team is aware of potential challenges to the successful implementation of their plan in advance and can address them. In other words, many of the obstacles to success would be addressed BEFORE the process begins.

This is not, however, a book about cunning strategies. From the outset, it contextualizes change management, which is critically important for any change management team to ensure the integrity of their initiative. This is the part that is often neglected or only superficially addressed and thus results in a poorly conceived and ultimately failed process. Leslie Allan raises the importance, from the outset, of addressing six contextual issues:

  • forces for change: what are the external and internal forces in your country, industry, organization and in the global community?
  • scope of the change: how much of the organization will it encompass or affect?
  • objectives of the change: is it about infrastructure, systems, people, structure or culture?
  • duration of change – is it short, medium or long?
  • depth of change: will it be incremental and linear or transformational and multidimensional?
  • direction of the force for change: will it be driven from above or will it come from frontline workers?

However, it is Leslie Allan’s six phases of the CHANGE process, innovatively presented, that form the bulk of her book (color diagram cannot be shown here):

againstreset voltage
Hharness bracket
HASarticulate goals
NOTskip roles
GRAMrow capacity
metrench changes

Each of these phases is covered in great depth and worksheets are provided for each, allowing people to record and document their ideas and responses as they go. While this approach has been presented in a linear fashion so that people can see the process, Leslie Allan makes it very clear that in practice it is not a linear process. He stresses throughout the book that it is people, not machines, that make change happen, or obstruct it, and that those leading change must push back all the time, reiterating the vision and repeating the message in a timely manner. wide variety of ways to gain the support of your people.

In fact, one of the most important chapters for me was section G on empowering people. After all, this is my area of ​​expertise and interest! Leslie Allan highlights the importance of investing in the people of the organization and their training, taking into account their various ways of learning and knowing and understanding, if we want change initiatives to be successful. This dovetailed well with her emphasis on the importance of communication in section H of hers on Leveraging Support.

One of the great values ​​of this book is that it addresses the important planning issues related to organizational and business objectives. It addresses, for example, performance metrics in change management, but it also strongly supports involving people in the organization in the change process and offers a lot of support, ideas and suggestions on how to do it in a way that ensures success. of the change initiative. It emphasizes the need for those leading the process to not only be technically proficient, but also have highly developed soft skills—all those important interpersonal, interpersonal, and communication skills.

This book is too comprehensive to review in its entirety. However, it is a book that I would recommend to a whole range of professionals and business leaders, not just those starting a change management process. It has great sections for project managers, team leaders, and people involved in training and development, for example. It also has valuable information on the psychology of resistance and how to win people over to new ideas and changes, an excellent section on communication, good information on goal setting, and a comprehensive section on team building.

While I see this book as a very valuable book on change management to have in your library, I am not promoting it as the magic wand of change management, because there is nothing magical about change. It is hard work! However, the book is a very useful, practical and excellent guide to the change management process. Trace a path to follow; raises highly relevant questions for your consideration; offers many, many solutions to common problems faced in change management initiatives. The thirteen worksheets he provides to accompany the book mean that, after working through the book, readers have a very well-developed draft of a change management process, all before they begin.

Leslie Allan is Managing Director of Business Performance Pty Ltd, a company specializing in creating practical tools and guides that help HR professionals perform their role more effectively. Mr. Allan has been helping organizations improve their capacity for over 20 years. He has contributed in various roles as a manager, consultant and trainer within the manufacturing and service industries, for both public and private sector organizations. Mr. Allan has led and been involved in the full range of turnaround programs including commissioning training functions, strategic planning, new technology implementations, continuous process improvement, building relocation, on-site communications of work and initiatives focused on the client.

Mr. Allan is a prolific writer on business topics, with many magazine and website articles to his credit. He is also the author of five books on employee empowerment, training, and change management. Mr. Allan currently serves as a Divisional Council Member of the Australian Institute for Training and Development and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management and the American Society for Quality.

More information about this book can be found at

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