Willing workforce crucial to change management

28 February 2013

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28 February 2013 | Adam Leach

The successful completion of large change management projects is strongly tied to workforce readiness, according to the former director of the US Defense Logistics Agency (DLA).

Speaking at the Defence Logistics 2013 event in London yesterday, retired vice admiral Keith Lippert, who led a business transformation programme during his time as director of the DLA highlighted the importance of getting the workforce on side. He told the audience: “It’s probably the single hardest thing to do, yet it’s the thing that is probably least planned for.”

Lippert, formerly a vice admiral in the US Navy who is now managing director of Accenture's national security services division, explained there are basic fundamentals that must be present when beginning a change programme.

Referring to the importance of executive leadership he said: “It truly amazes me that a lot of these efforts are done as an IT project rather than as a project for the organisation as a whole.”

Without this leadership from the top and other basic elements, such as a strong business case and robust governance structure, he said it is easy to determine whether a project would be successful.

“I can walk into an organisation and ask some of these basic questions, and if the answer to any of them is no, I can guarantee that the change programme or IT implementation is going to fail,” he said.

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