Change Management Courses
Why is Change Management Training Necessary?
Change management has become one of the main focuses of successful businesses, regardless of their size or industry. From one to ten thousand employees, knowing how to prepare for and execute change is necessary. Businesses must deal with change in today’s ever-changing environment. Politics, technology, internal structure, and countless other reasons drive the need to change. Knowing how to make the most of this is what makes change management training worth the investment.
Change management courses go through the structures and operations of modern businesses, with the goal of emphasizing how complex yet delicate handling change is. Factors that drive change are explained alongside potential resistance by employees. Communication and personal involvement is also a highlight of the best courses. Interpersonal skills are needed to encourage and support employees throughout the journey of a changing operation. What is learned in a change management course applies to all industries, business sizes, levels of experience, and types of change. Concrete skills make future success more likely. Confidence and practice make perfect in the application of any skill.
Who are Change Management Courses for?
If a person is involved in the operation of a business, they are part of change management. Those far from management positions are still involved and are key parts of making sure everything works out as intended. Whilst the materials tailored for a lower level worker will differ from those for executive management, expect the same fundamentals throughout. Executive employees will be taught the best ways to become a sponsor of change. Managers will be given the tools necessary to build a framework that supports the change and accompanying goals as much as it supports the employees who are involved. Project leaders, as well as those directly involved with projects, are shown how to combine project management and change management to ensure that goals are achieved. Everyone else who is involved will become aware of resistance, with one aim being for resistance to be replaced with confidence, thereby allowing them to remain motivated in whatever area they may work in.
Change management courses may also be directed towards change management professionals. Studying and supporting the ideas behind change management can start with a college degree and become an entire career. Additional skill training and certification is available for those in this position. Reinforcing existing knowledge and learning what has been developed can make a professional an expert in this area. Businesses may encourage employees to earn certificates, and individuals may want to seek this path to add to their resume and experience as well.
When there is a merger and acquisition of different companies, the different cultures of the companies may not be aligned. The organizations will more than likely face myriad of challenges in integration process with their system, employees’ behavior/loyalty, management conflicts, etc.There will be reluctance from employees to adapt to the changes from the other organizations, which could cause low morale in employees. Therefore, change management courses are vital to a successful merger and acquisition.
What do Online Change Management Courses Involve for Each Type of Employee?
The key ideas above are taught alongside supporting concepts that relate to each level. Online courses are an effective way to empower employees without tying up valuable time with travel or workshops. In-person teaching is sometimes more appropriate, but online courses are often chosen due to their benefits and ease of access.
Executive training is targeted towards those who are responsible for initiatives and performance, like organizational leaders and senior executives. Understanding how change management improves results and defining individual roles as sponsors of change can create a solid foundation on which other information is built upon. If a current change management plan or portfolio exists, the opportunity to review it is also given. Self assessment in competency will allow each executive employee to figure out where they are at as an individual, further tailoring their experience and future goals.
Any course in any subject has the goal of transmitting knowledge that lasts, but it is just as important to provide immediate tools for success. These can be used right away within the business. Building a connection between change sponsorship, employee functions, and success comes as a result of learning. How these are taught will depend on the provider of individual courses, but expect similar concepts.
Manager training is applicable to any employee that manages others, from supervisors to senior directors. Change practitioners and other change management professionals may benefit from courses such as these, but those tailored specifically for their work will be best. Like those in executive positions, managers receive similar training. The difference in the training lies primarily in that managers work directly with individuals so their training will address employee resistance to change and introduce tools they can use to effectively manage change. Courses may offer different models of management or materials to support learning.
Project Leaders and Members
Project leader training may be beneficial for project managers, project teams, and members within these teams. These courses are often shorter than others and information given will help combine change management and individual project management. The connection between employees, each project’s results, and achievement will be explored in a way that helps define where impact is most meaningful. Change management’s influence on project life cycles and a project’s impact on large scale success are extremely important to understand. Change management also works on the smaller scale within projects, as each team and goal functions as a microcosm of the business as a whole.
Employees not in management or leadership roles can still benefit from change management training. The focus usually is on how their organization and specific roles are changing, and how to identify resistance. Employees who are fully supportive of change efforts may still have resistance they are not necessarily aware of. They may believe change is great, yet worry how it will impact their role, such as vacation days or their job duties. Even these small doubts can impact a changing business. A common approach is to teach employees how to make the best of change. When it is not their management or leadership choices driving change, employees cannot alter the change effort. It is up to them to figure out how to work with and adapt to what is happening, and this is how a change management training course can help.
How Long do Change Management Programs Take?
When conducted online, a change management training course may take only a few hours to a full day. This depends upon each administration group’s agenda and depth of work. For most employees, expect a half to full day session. Some courses may be conducted with a set agenda that employees follow, but others may also offer information at the pace an employee is comfortable following. Whether the course is conducted by an instructor or is only material that has to be read, similar information will be offered.
Starting in the morning, and continuing in the afternoon after a break period, is a common way that courses are conducted online. Short courses that take only a few hours may be conducted at different times throughout the day. There are also training courses specifically designed to be completed quickly. A “short course” like that from Courses for Success may be done at a user’s own pace. The goal is to complete the course in a few hours, but it is much more effective to allow self-paced learning. Rushing someone is only a good way to ensure they do not absorb all the material. It is this flexibility that draws many businesses into using online learning over traditional methods, like training seminars or in-person events that may require travelling and additional costs.
Where is Online Change Management Training Offered?
Numerous organizations offer training, such as Prosci. There are workshops that follow an agenda which is taught over a number of hours, and there is also material available for use in whatever ways are appropriate in a specific situation. Ideas for games and activities are available for access without signing up or paying for professional workshops. This material can be used to further reinforce learning after a workshop, or it may be adapted into the primary experience when appropriate. Cost, time, number of employees and information to be learned–all of these are factors to consider when selecting a provider of courses, or finding material to use.
Further certification is offered by some providers. Educational institutions like Cornell offer these outside of the higher education experience. These professional certifications are becoming increasingly recognized in the business environment. For businesses seeking certification for employees, additional courses like these are an option. Change professionals also have certifications available in their field.
What About Workshops and Training Seminars?
In-person training has been a tool used in business for years. Personal skills like communication and understanding may be taught more effectively when there is face-to-face learning. For businesses with the time and resources available to either house these sessions, or organize travel to those hosted elsewhere, these traditional approaches should be considered.
Major cities are hotspots for in-person training, making travel less complicated if necessary. If the business already exists within the city or has connections to it, travel may be considered almost negligible. Time is also an extremely important resource to figure into attending workshops or seminars. Many last beyond one day, and travel time should also be added into this. Multiple days of attendance may require housing, meal planning, and other considerations. Most last one to three days, but there are functions that are only a few hours. For these short functions, travel and cost may outweigh their benefit over online experiences. Depending upon the training offered, you can expect lectures, hands-on work, panel discussions and more. Similar information to online courses will be taught. For certain employees or businesses within certain industries, these in-person learning experiences are often worth the investment.
Certifications are also granted by attending in-person workshops, like those from ATD. An experience involving working with others can encourage an employee to truly learn, rather than just complete the course for the sake of a certificate.
Are Online Courses Better?
Every person learns in their own way, from kindergarten to important professional skills as an adult. Some learn by reading or watching, and others only truly grasp a concept only after experiencing it hands-on. For an employee that learns best by reading, an in-person seminar may not be as valuable for them as an online course. For an employee that thrives with others and learns by experience, an online course may offer little value to them. It is not practical to tailor change management training for each and every employee in most cases, but a middle ground can be found that will be of benefit to everyone involved.
Consider the industry, employee roles and experience, and past learning opportunities when selecting any course. Online courses tend to cost less, take less time to complete, and may be especially beneficial in high turnover environments, according to numerous professionals involved in change management. One scenario where an online course is definitely a better choice is employee onboarding, especially in a business where new employees join regularly. It is much easier to have an employee complete a quick online course when they arrive rather than trying to schedule in-person training.
When In-Person Learning is a Better Choice
In-person training is ideal for small groups, especially when goals include communication and team exercises. These experiences can include role play and simulation of business interactions, reinforcing information with a memorable interaction. This form of change management training is usually costly compared to online learning, especially for a large group.
Classroom learning, seminars, and workshops are ideal when employees will not lose valuable work time for travel and when a clear benefit is seen, such as training that focuses on interpersonal skills for those in roles where supporting colleagues is part of their job functions. It may be of benefit to introduce online training first, and then looking into these other experiences if necessary. Starting with a proven method that costs less in terms of both time and money makes sense in most cases.
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