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Change Management Glossary

A comprehensive change management glossary that contains more than 180 terms providing clear and simple descriptions to boost your organisational change management knowledge. This glossary pertains to the Leadership of Change®. Please feel free to utilise our a2B Change Management Glossary below. If you find it useful, please consider buying our paperbacks and electronic books.

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4IR: See ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’.

5S: The approach organises the workplace, keeps it neat and clean, establishes standardised conditions and maintains discipline to sustain the effort. The name comes from the five steps required to implement the process into the workplace. The words used to describe each step: Sort, Set in order, Shine, Standardise, and Sustain. This is sometimes referred to as 6S when Safety is included.

5 Whys: A lean technique that refers to the practice of asking, five times, why the failure has occurred in order to get to the root cause of the problem.

a2B5R® Model: Our systematic model to change employee behaviour and promote change adoption. The model has five stages: Recognise, Redesign, Resolve, Replicate and Reinforce.

a2B Change Management Framework®: Our a2B Change Management Framework® (a2BCMF®) is a structured and disciplined approach to support organisations, leadership teams and individuals going through a change, the transition from the current ‘a’ state to the improved future ‘B’ state. It has ten key steps but iterations between the steps are usually necessary and some can be worked in parallel.

a2BCMF® Model: See ‘a2B Change Management Framework®’.

a2BDNS© Developing the New Skills Model: The six-step process for developing the new skills and behaviours so employees are prepared for the new way of working. The model has six process steps: Define, Identify, Evaluate, Assess, Deliver Coach and Appraise.


a2BDNS© Model: See ‘a2B Developing the New Skills Model’.

Actionee(s): Person(s) responsible for carrying out an action within the change programme or project.

Adoption: Change adoption is the way that the organisation and employees make the transition from the current ‘a’ state to the improved future ‘B’ state, leaving the old ways behind and adopting the new way of working and behaving. It is confirmation that they have fully accepted the change, both in mind and in heart. It is agreement that the new way of working is more efficient and benefits both the organisation and customers and is part of the organisation’s future DNA.

Advocates: One of three employee change standpoints during change implementation. ‘Advocates’ are similar to the change agents with their positivity towards change. Their energy should be harnessed as they can play an effective role in leading and implementing the change.


Alternative Solutions: Assessing other possible courses of action and solutions during the discussion and creation of the business case. Are there alternatives to this change programme?


AMI© Change Leadership Model: This model outlines the three critical leadership responsibilities to implement change: Articulate the vision, Model the new way and Intervene to ensure sustainable change.

Articulate: The first element of a leader’s role in organisational change. Leaders are expected to ‘Articulate’ the organisation’s change vision.

AUILM® Model: This model outlines the five key life cycle stages the employee goes through in the change transition from the current ‘a’ state to the improved future ‘B’ state. AUILM® is an acronym that represents: Awareness, Understanding, Involvement, Learning and Motivation.

Backfire: The tendency of some leaders and employees to resist accepting evidence that conflicts with their beliefs. It causes people to strengthen their support for their original stance.


Bad Business: A change project or programme within an organisation that does not have leadership alignment, sponsorship or capacity in order for it to be successful.

Balanced Scorecard (BSC): An integrated set of measures built around the organisation’s mission, vision and strategy. Measures address the financial, customer, internal business process and learning and growth perspectives. They provide a balanced view on what is required to enact the strategy and can be used to measure the change programme.

Barrier: An impediment to successful change. These are challenges to overcome when planning, executing and sustaining change programmes. Examples might include individuals actively or passively resisting change or anything that has the potential to stop or weaken the change effort.

Baseline: The reference level against which a project, programme or portfolio is monitored and controlled.

Behaviour: The way in which employees respond to specific circumstances or situations within the workplace environment. While many elements determine an individual’s behaviour in the workplace, employees are shaped by their culture and by the organisation’s culture.

Behaviour Training: The training that develops the few new employee and organisation behaviours required to support change adoption. It involves defining the critical few behaviours, designing and delivering the training, and leaders modelling the new behaviours. It is supported by our a2B5R® Model to embed the new behaviours.

Benefit: The quantifiable and measurable improvement, resulting from completion of the change or deliverables that are perceived as positive by an organisation. It will normally have a tangible value and be expressed in monetary terms that will justify the investment. The quantitative and qualitative, measurable and non-measurable outcomes resulting from a change.

Benefits Plan and Tracker (BPT): The identification, definition, planning, tracking and realisation of business benefits as defined in the a2BCMF® Step 1 - Change Definition.

Benefits Realisation: The actual achievement of the change benefits which are usually delivered through the Execute and Sustain phase. This is usually the reason why most organisations undertake a change programme and is the way an organisation achieves a ROI. It will normally include a tangible value expressed in monetary terms that will justify the investment.

Budget: The sum of money allocated to the change programme. The term may also refer to revenue and expenses.

Business Case: Developed to assess the change programme’s balance between costs and benefits. The business case provides business reasons for starting the change programme.

Business Operations: See ‘Normal Day-to-Day Operations’.

Business Plan: A document that summarises the operational and financial objectives of an organisation and contains the detailed plans and budgets showing how the objectives are to be realised.

Business Process: A system of activities by which a business creates a specific result for its customers. There are the foundation of how the organisation operates and along with employees and systems they play a significant role in organisations.

Change: The transition from the current state ‘a’ to the future state ‘B’.

Change Agent: The individuals or groups whose task it is to effect change. They can be any member of an organisation or an external consultant involved in facilitating, supporting, influencing or implementing change. They might not be called ‘change agents’ as their official job title may not recognise or formalise their responsibility.

Change Blindness: A condition, where people cling to an old belief without considering the future or better options.

Change Capable Organisation: An organisation with developed change capability to constantly manage change successfully, maximising employee adoption and delivering sustainable benefits. A key benefit of change capability is to implement change and improvement to stay ahead of the competition. Typical elements include; competent change professionals, leaders of change, sponsors, a change management framework, an employee change adoption model, an employee behaviour change model, training, toolkits, change processes, templates, assessments, etc.

Change Capacity: The overall capacity of an organisation to either effectively prepare for, or respond to, an increasingly unpredictable planned change.

Change Communication Plan (CCP): The plan that depicts the key communications, the channels and the timing of these messages or events.

Change Control: Unlike the process of organisational change management, this process is about modifications to documents, deliverables, or baselines. It ensures that modifications associated with the project are identified, documented, approved, or rejected. Change control is a major aspect of the broader discipline of change management.

Change Disruption: Irreversible change that affects nearly every organisation as a result of living during the fourth industrial revolution (4IR). A period of disruption while the new change takes effect.

Change Fatigue: A general sense of apathy or passive resignation towards continual organisational changes by individuals, teams or leaders.

Change Freeze: The point at which scope changes to a programme are no longer permissible.

Change History Assessment© (CHA©): This can be used to assess and review the outcomes of earlier change programmes and initiatives. It provides organisational insights that may increase the likelihood of successful implementation through the analysis of lessons learned, mitigation of previous weaknesses and enhancement of future success.

Change Impact: How employees, processes, systems and the organisation are affected during the transition from the current ‘a’ state to the improved future ‘B’ state.

Change Initiative: The name given to an organisational change programme or improvement project.


Change Leadership: Is about being a proactive growth mindset employee who has the knowledge, skills and ability to successfully transition an organisation from the current state ‘a’ to the future ‘B’ state, ensuring adoption and benefits realisation. This transition involves planning the change, executing the change so that the organisation and its employees sustain the change or transformation. The change leader has three key responsibilities for the successful leadership of change, they are ‘Articulate’, ‘Model’ and ‘Intervene’.

Change Management: A field of management focused on organisational change which is the practice of applying a structured approach to transition an organisation from the current ‘a’ state to the improved future ‘B’ state to achieve change adoption and the expected benefits.


Change Management Definition: As per the Leadership of Change® - Change management is the process, techniques and tools to support
organisations, leadership teams and employees going through a change
transition from the current ‘a’ state to the improved future ‘B’ state. 
It minimises organisation disruption and maximises benefits.

Change Management Framework: See ‘a2B Change Management Framework’.


Change Management Gamification: The growing trend which helps to engage employees by using gaming methods. Gamification can be used by employees to learn, test and prepare for organisational change. 

Change Management Handbook: A book containing instructions or advice about how to do something, or the most important and useful information about a subject. A reference book, in this case, practical change management implementation. This handbook contains the ten-step a2B Change Management

Change Management Pocket Guide: Typically, a small paperback that can be carried in the pocket which provides help on change management. The pocket guide contains the ten-step a2B Change Management Framework® (a2BCMF®) and is supported by over thirty concepts, models, figures, assessments, tools, templates, checklists and plans, as well as a roadmap and glossary.

Change Model: Models to describe and simplify a principle or define a process to develop a change deliverable.

Change Readiness Assessment (CRA): An assessment to establish if the employee and organisation are ready for change implementation. It can also gauge whether resistance will be high or low.

Change Risk: An event or condition that, if it occurs, may have an effect on change adoption and benefits realisation.

Change Saturation: When the amount of change occurring in an organisation is more than can be effectively handled by those affected by the change.

Change Sponsor Assessment (CSA): An assessment used to assess if the sponsor is performing their duties and if they are committed to the success of the change programme. The assessment should be transparent and focus on how the sponsor is performing their role with regards to ‘Say’, ‘Support’ and ‘Sustain’ activities.

Change Vision: The description of the future state ‘B’. It describes how the organisation will look after the change is successfully implemented in the time limit specified.

Charter: See ‘Programme Charter’ and ‘Project Charter’.

Checklist: A quality control technique. This may include a set of important elements that the change practitioner uses for requirement verification and validation of key change programme activities.

Coaching: A process that enables learning and development to occur and therefore performance to improve. The role of a coach is to give the employee feedback on observed performance.

Core Competence: An organisation’s unique capability that would be greatly appreciated by customers and would be difficult for competitors to quickly duplicate.

Communication Channels: The routes used to send messages, such as social media, emails, verbal presentations, reports, etc.

Competency: The organisation or individual collection of knowledge, skills, behaviours, and other characteristics and abilities to perform the role. Definitions of competencies tend to be broader than just skills.

Competency Dictionary: A tool or data structure that includes all or most of the general competencies needed to cover all job families and competencies that are core or common to all jobs within an organisation.

Competency Framework: Defines the knowledge, skills, and attributes needed for employees within an organisation. Each role will have its own set of competencies needed to perform the job effectively.

Constraint: A limitation on the change programme which could impact schedule, cost or quality of the change.

Continuous and Never-Ending Improvement (CANI): The name given to the process of always needing to improve. It is associated with growth mindset people.

Continuous Improvement (CI): The never-ending improvement of products, services or processes through incremental and breakthrough improvements. The goal is to increase effectiveness by reducing inefficiencies, frustrations, and waste (rework, time, effort, material, etc.).

Continuous Never Ending Change and Improvement (CNECI): The believe that life is all about 'Continuous Never Ending Change and Improvement' as we grow, develop and regenerate.

Cost Overrun: This occurs when unexpected costs cause a change programme’s actual cost to go beyond budget.

Critical Success Factor (CSF): A management term for an element that is necessary for an organisation or change programme to achieve its mission.

Culture: A system of shared assumptions, values and beliefs, which govern how people behave. These shared values have a strong influence on the employees in the organisation and dictate how they behave, act and perform their jobs.

Current State: The condition at the time the change is initiated, defined as the current ‘a’ state. The current state of the organisation’s business processes, systems and employees before the change is implemented. It is often used as a baseline before the organisation moves to the future ‘B’ state.

Data: Numbers in an electronic form (usually computer) that can be collected, stored and examined and converted into information that can be used to help decision-making. 

Day-in-Life-of (DILO): The DILO study provides insights into the employee’s daily operational activities, highlighting tasks that add value in day-to-day work and those that do not.

Deluded Leaders: Leaders who prevent true change programme implementation because they believe (for various reasons) they are more important than the change.

Dependencies: In the project change plan, dependencies are the relationships between preceding tasks. Tasks may have multiple sub-tasks and multiple succeeding sub-tasks.

Device: A computer, tool, object or machine that has been invented for a particular purpose in business (see system).

Due Diligence: One of the first steps in achieving the change programme’s goals by systematically assessing the viability of the change initiative. It is effectively a risk management process designed to enable a decision on whether the change should proceed. It assesses risks, benefits, costs and impacts, providing a go/no go decision on whether the project should proceed.

Eight Wastes of Lean: TIM H WOOD is an acronym for the 8 wastes commonly found within business: Transport, Inventory Motion, Human, Waiting, Over production, Over processing, Defects.

Emotional Intelligence: The ability to monitor your emotions or the emotions of others and use this to guide your actions during the change. Leaders of change need to recognise and regulate emotions in themselves and others. As change management professionals, we engage employees and impacted stakeholders, relying on them to adopt the change and ensure benefits realisation.

Employee: An individual who was hired by an employer to perform a specific role that adds value to the organisation. Successful change depends on AUILM® and/or a2B5R® support. Along with processes and systems they play a significant role in organisations.

Employee Behaviour: The way in which employees respond to specific circumstances or changes in the workplace.


Employee Change Engagement: Is a workplace approach that creates a growth mindset environment where employees feel valued, two-way communication is in place, they are motivated, committed to their organisation’s goals and values, and contribute to organisational change success.

Employee Engagement: A workplace approach resulting in the right conditions for all employees of an organisation to feel passionate about their jobs, be committed to their organisation’s goals and values, and be motivated to contribute to organisational change and success.


Employee Process System Data (EPSD): Four critical elements that need to be aligned by the change team during organisational change implementation.

Enabler: A positive facilitator to successful change. These can be individuals actively or passively supporting change or anything that has the potential to improve change implementation success.

Entitlement: Employees with sense of entitlement believe that are owed favours by the organisation and should get what they want because of who they are. Others might observe their worthiness as unrealistic, unmerited, or inappropriate.

Estimated Completion Date (ECD): The expected date an action or deliverable should be complete.

Facilitator: The person responsible to guide and support employees through the change process interactively.

Fixed Mindset: Employees with a fixed mindset will, by default, reject and resist disruption and change. This will prevent true change. Their assumption is that change is usually always bad, and they stick to what they know.

Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR): Describes exponential change in the way we live, work and relate to one another. 4IR includes the adoption of cyber-physical systems, the Internet of Things and the Internet of Systems.

Frame of Reference: A set of criteria or stated values in relation to perceptions and judgements that can be made by employees. How the employee or change target interprets what they see in terms of their own cultural frame of reference.

Future State: The future state ‘B’, when employees have adopted the new way of working and the benefits have been realised.


Gap Analysis. The difference between current 'a' state and future 'B' state. Gap analyses identifies the changes or improvements that are needed to establish the organisation's future state. Eliminating or closing the gap is the purpose of most change or improvement initiative.

Governance: The decision-making processes, applied by authorised individuals or teams, for approving/rejecting, monitoring and adjusting activities of the project change plan (PCP).

GROW Coaching: A popular structure for change leadership coaching to guides the conversation with the person being coached to talk about the: Goal – what they want to achieve, Reality – where is that person now, what things are getting in their way, Options – what can be done in order to help them reach their goal and Will and wrap-up – create a plan of action and the motivation to carry out that plan.

Growth Mindset: These employees embrace disruption and change to improve organisation performance. Setbacks are opportunities to learn (CANI) and an individual’s effort and attitude determine success.

Hubris: Leaders with excessive pride and over confidence which manifests itself as a major barrier to change implementation success.

Hunch and Launch Syndrome: A name given to the process of coming up with a change idea (hunch) and then introducing (launch) it into the organisation without strategic consideration or a plan on how the benefits will be realised. These ideas rarely deliver strategic change or sustainable benefits and are sometimes referred to as ‘pet projects’.


Incremental Change: Small strategic improvements or adjustments that will improve organisational performance but will not alter the organisation’s core.

Individual Performance Plan (IPP): An instrument used to establish performance expectations and support the performance evaluation of each employee, usually linked to the balanced scorecard and an individual’s bonus.

Intervene: The third element of a leader’s role in organisational change. They should ‘Intervene’ when they observe an employee resisting change, or when employees are not adopting the new skills and behaviours.

Intervention: All the planned programme activities that aim to bring changes into an organisation. They are led by the sponsor and the leadership team.

Key Performance Indicators (KPI): A set of quantifiable measures that a company uses to gauge its performance over time. These metrics are used to determine an organisation’s progress in achieving its strategic (change) and operational goals. They also compare a company’s finances and performance against other businesses within its industry.

Knowledge Transfer: The process of transferring knowledge from the change programme to other parts or systems within the organisation. Like knowledge management, knowledge transfer seeks to capture, organise, create, or distribute knowledge and ensure its availability for future change teams.

Leader: An individual in the organisation who is responsible for leading, directing, commanding, or guiding a group or activity to create value. Characteristics of a leader; sets direction, inspires, innovates, motivates, empowers create a vision for the future.

Leadership: The leaders of the organisation are collectively responsible for strategy execution and its inherent change programmes.

Leader of Change®: A person in the organisation who is responsible for leading; directing, commanding, or guiding a group or activity in success organisational change implementation. Without a leader of change leading the change programme, it is likely to fail. The change leader’s role in organisational change is to ‘Articulate’ the change vision, ‘Model’ the new behaviours and ‘Intervene’ to reinforce the change.

Leadership Alignment: This process develops change leadership capability so the organisation’s leaders are aligned, as a high performing team, with change leadership skills and knowledge to successfully lead the organisation’s change, transformation or improvement to accelerate employee change adoption and deliver sustainable long-term benefits.

Leadership of Change®: Encompasses change management concepts, models, depictions, assessments, tools, templates, checklists, plans, a roadmap and glossary structured around the ten-step a2B Change Management Framework®. The delivery vehicles are change management books, change management gamification manuals, leadership alignment workshops and masterclasses.

Lean: A process improvement methodology, focused on reducing waste in a system. The term lean is derived from the idea that the approach reduces ‘waste’ that contributes to inefficient processes and poor outcomes.

Lessons Learned: The sum of knowledge gained from the change programme. This should be used as a reference, input and points of interest for future change programmes or projects.


Manager: An individual who is responsible for controlling or administering an organisation or group of staff to create value. Characteristics of a manager; sets specific goals, provides structure for the team, solves problems and plans.

Master Project Plan: The wider project plan that drives the change or transformation across the organisation and coordinates activities performed by the work streams. The project change plan (PCP) should be aligned with the key milestones on the master project plan and both plans should be updated simultaneously. In some cases, there may only be a PCP.

Mentoring: A process of providing support, challenge and extension of the learning of one person through the guidance of another who is more knowledgeable and experienced.

Merger: The combination of two or more separate companies into one. Most mergers involve the integration of operations, processes, assets, management and organisations.

Milestone: An important date or deadline, the start or end of significant phases of work shown on the project change plan (PCP). It is usually reflected as a diamond symbol.

Mission: Describes the overall purpose of the organisation. Each organisation’s statement can vary widely in terms of content, stretch and scope.

Model: The second element of a leader’s role in organisational change. It is an activity expected from the organisation’s leader (and sponsor). They should ‘Model’ the new skills and behaviours, providing a role model to other staff.

Narcissistic Leader: A leader with excessive self-confidence and an obsessive focus on their personal image, accompanied by contempt for anyone who thinks that the organisation’s strategic change programme is more important than them.

Normal Day-to-Day Operations: The activities that an organisation and its employees engage in on a daily basis for the purposes of generating a profit and increasing the inherent value of the organisation.

Observers: One of three employee change standpoints during change implementation. ‘Observers’ will monitor the ‘Advocates’ and assess if the change is benefiting them. If this appears positive, they will tend to move towards being receptive to the change.

Organisation: A social arrangement for achieving controlled performance in pursuit of collective goals.

Organisational Development (OD): A process for instigating, implementing and sustaining change, it involves activities that impact employees, the team and the organisation.

Outcome: A specific measurable result or effect of an action or situation.


PESTEL Analysis: The acronym for a tool used to analyse the macro (external) forces facing an organisation. PESTLE stands for Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental and Legal.

Pet Projects: Projects directed or supported by the CEO or other senior leaders that appeal to their emotions and hubris. They rarely deliver strategic value.
Planned Change: An intentional intervention for bringing about change to an organisation. It is best characterised as deliberate, purposeful and systematic.


Process: See business process.

Programme: A group of related projects, sub-programmes and programme activities that are managed in a coordinated way to obtain benefits not available by managing them individually. (a2BCMF® uses this default name for change initiatives, each client organisation can refer to them as programmes, projects, etc.)

Programme Charter: The programme charter is a document that details the scope, organisation, and objectives of a programme. It authorises the programme sponsor or manager to use organisational resources to deliver the programme. The programme charter may include various project charters.

Project: A temporary endeavour undertaken to create a unique product, service, change or result.

Project Change Plan (PCP): The plan to deliver the change programme. (The words project and programme can be interchangeable depending on the makeup of the change initiative. It can be either a project or programme).

Project Charter: The project charter is a document that details the scope, organisation, and objectives of a project. It authorises the project sponsor or manager to use the organisational resources to deliver the project.

Project Management: The application of knowledge, skills, tools, and techniques to achieve project activities to meet the project requirements.

Qualitative Data: Collects information that seeks to describe a topic more than measure it, such as opinions, views and reflections. A qualitative survey is less structured, and it seeks to delve deeply into the assessment topics to gain information about stakeholders and employee’s motivations, thinking, and attitudes.

Quantitative Data: Designed to collect cold, hard facts. Numbers. Quantitative data is structured and statistical. It provides support when you need to draw general conclusions from your assessment or research.

Rarely Blame the Employee (RBtE): Employees should rarely be blamed, as we don't know their environment or background. Only the behaviours they are exhibiting should be judged.

Readiness: The process of assessing the change readiness of the organisation and the employees prior to change implementation. This will ensure change can be adopted and the benefits can be realised.

Rebels: One of three employee change standpoints during change implementation. ‘Rebels’ tend to resist change blindly, sometimes this can be a natural reaction even if the change is to their benefit. The default reaction is that change is a bad thing and will put them at a disadvantage.

Reinforce: Reinforcing change is critical to ensure adoption of the new way of working. The sponsor and leaders are expected to intervene when there is resistance, or when the employees are not adopting the new skills and behaviours.

Resistance: The reaction by the organisation, departments or individuals when they perceive that an organisational change coming their way could be a threat to them. Without further awareness and understanding, this resistance will cause fear. It will trigger actions that negatively impact the pace of organisational change implementation, adoption of the new ways of working and benefits delivery.

Resistance Management: The process of addressing stakeholders’ opposition to a change.

Resistance Strategy Plan (RSP): This plan provides specific actions to understand and address resistance. The actions and plan focus on the change implementation strategy and vary depending on if it is a ‘Tell’ or ‘Sell’ change implementation approach. This is a component plan of the PCP and may be needed if the change team foresees high resistance challenges.

Return on Investment (ROI): The benefits that the change delivers. These are dependent on speed of adoption as well as delivering the programme on time, within budget and the specified scope. The ROI can be calculated using the following equation, ROI = (Expected Project Benefits - Project Costs) / Project Costs.

Rework: Correcting a defective, failed, or non-conforming item, service or product prior to customer delivery. Rework includes an organisation’s repeat effort, such as disassembly, repair, replacement, reassembly, etc.

Risk: See ‘Change Risk’.

Roadmap: A chronological representation of a programme’s intended direction, graphically depicting dependencies between major milestones and decision points, while communicating the linkage between the organisation’s strategy and the programme’s work.

Say: The first key element of sponsorship. ‘Say’ is the foundation and is all about communicating the business case for the change to all affected stakeholders.
Skills: Transferable skills are needed by the employee to be able to operate at the new way of working. These will include technical understanding and subject knowledge.

Seat Warmer Nominee© (SWN©): A person in an organisational role, family business, BoD, government, committee, etc who are either nominated into a an important position but are unconcerned or deluded about the business value or objectives they should be delivering.

Servant Leadership: A leadership philosophy in which the main goal of the leader is to serve others, focussing on the needs of employees, especially team members, before they consider themselves. Leaders do not accrue power or take control. The characteristics of servant leadership are compulsory to be an effective and proactive leader of change.

Skills and Behaviours Learning Plan (SBLP): Identifies skills and behaviours that will be required for the employees to adapt to the new way of working. A training needs analysis (TNA) can be used to identify skill and behaviour gaps. This is a component plan of the PCP and may be needed if the change team foresees learning or training as a major activity in terms of effort and time.


SIPOC: Is a process improvement tool used for documenting business processes. SIPOC stands for Suppliers, Inputs, Process, Outputs, and Customers which often form the columns of the diagram. The SIPOC diagram visually illustrates a business process from beginning to end at a high level. It is sometimes called COPIS so the process improvement start with the customer first.

Sponsor: The most senior leader within the programme, reporting to the CEO or a steering committee. They are authorised to mandate the programme, the business case and are responsible for change adoption, benefits realisation and successful change programme delivery.

Sponsorship: The sponsorship role is to communicate the programme’s change (‘Say’), provide resources (‘Support’) and ensure the change lasts (‘Sustain’). The process of aligning stakeholders to support and own the change.

Sponsorship and Resource Plan: Identifies the change sponsor and defines the strategy and actions to develop the required programme resources; change lead, communication lead, change agents, etc. This is a component plan of the PCP and may be needed if the change team foresees resourcing their team as a challenge.

Sponsor Assessment: An assessment of the organisation’s sponsorship that can identify strengths or weaknesses with the change implementation.
Stakeholder: An individual affected or impacted by a change.

Stakeholder Analysis: The systematic examination and evaluation of stakeholders in order to prioritise, manage and engage with them effectively throughout the change programme.

Stakeholder Engagement: The process in which an organisation involves and engages people who may be affected by the decisions it makes or can influence the implementation of the change.

Stakeholder Engagement Plan: Identifies the actions to engage groups and individuals affected by the change and mitigate resistance by enlisting their support, adoption and ownership. This is a component plan of the PCP and may be needed if the change team foresees stakeholder engagement challenges.

Stakeholder Mapping: This involves representing stakeholders on a grid to display their level of influence on one axis (low to high) and their likely level of cooperation (‘Rebels’, ‘Observers’ and ‘Advocates’) toward the change on the other.

Standard Operating Procedure (SOP): Are top-level documents that advise employees which actions to take under a variety of circumstances, standard work instructions (SWI) describe those actions in detail. SOPs should be written in a brief manner in simple language and usually only describe the ‘who’, ‘what’ and ‘when’ (ISO 9001). 

Standard Work Instructions (SWI): Are lower-level detailed instructions designed to ensure that an organisation's manufacturing and service processes are consistent, timely and repeatable. Leading practice suggests SWI are printed and located near the operator’s work station. They are linked to the top standard operating procedure (SOP) and these documents provide more details on the tasks, they show the 'how' the activities are carried out (ISO 9001).

Strategic Planning: The process undertaken by an organisation to define its overall purpose, priorities to work towards that purpose and how each priority will be addressed.

Strategy: An approach to achieve an organisation’s strategic goals or address strategic issues. A strategy might be a major approach that uses the internal strengths of an organisation to take advantage of external opportunities, while shoring up internal weaknesses to ward off external threats. An organisation’s strategies are usually long-term.

Subject Matter Expert (SME): An individual who exhibits the highest level of expertise in performing a specialised job, task, or skill within the organisation and can be an invaluable resource to the change team.

Support: The second key element of sponsorship. ‘Support’ builds on ‘Say’ and in this element the sponsor starts to actively and overtly support the change, provide resources and coach the organisation.

Sustain (1): The third phase of a2BCMF® change implementation. Closing the change programme to sustain adoption and ensure benefits realisation.

Sustain (2): The third key element of sponsorship. It builds on ‘Say’ and ‘Sustain’. ‘Sustain’ is critical for the organisation to deliver value and achieve its strategic goals.

Sustainability: The ability to maintain the future state ‘B’.

Sustain and Close Plan: The sustain part of the plan provides an approach to sustaining adoption and benefits realisation. The close plan will officially transfer ownership and close off the programme, ensuring administrative activities are completed as per the organisation’s procedures. This is a component plan of the PCP and may be needed if the change team foresees sustaining and closing the change as challenging.

System: A set of interconnected devices that provide outputs. They execute and control the internal processes and procedures that deliver the organisations products or services. Along with employees and processes they play a significant role in organisations.

System Change: An organisational change that focuses on changing its internal systems which manage and control the internal processes and procedures that deliver its products or services.

System Operating Manual (SOM): Is the documentation by which an organisation provides guidance on how operators should operate the referenced business system. It documents the approved standard procedures for performing steps correctly and reasonably efficiently to produce goods and provide services.

Tactic: A series of activities, usually short-term and small in scale, intended to achieve a goal or objective.

Threat: A negative risk that could adversely affect the change programme’s objectives.

TIM H WOOD: See ‘Eight Wastes of Lean’.

To-Be State: See ‘Future State’.

Training Needs Analysis (TNA): The process in which the organisation identifies the training and development needs of its employees so that they can do their job effectively.

Training Plan: A detailed plan for how the organisation, groups and individuals will be trained and coached so they have the new skills and behaviours to perform the new way of working. It will include the training objectives, how and who will develop the content, the selection process of who will be trained, when they will be trained, who will deliver the training, how the trainers will be trained, assessment criteria and coaching plans.

Transfer of Ownership: Prior to closing the change programme, the sponsor and change team should coordinate the controlled transfer of ownership to operations and receive approval to formally close out the programme.

Transformation: Fundamental changes that are significant and considered vital to the future success of the organisation.

Transition State: The state between the current ‘a’ and future ‘B’ state. Transition state is the process of equipping the employees with skills and behaviours to adopt the new way of working so the organisation can achieve benefits realisation.

Triple Constraint: The triple constraint is the combination of the three most significant restrictions on any change programme or project; scope, schedule and cost.

Trusted Advisor: A trusted advisor is a practitioner who influence and help the organisation implement the change. The person will have credibility, reliability, intimacy and low self-orientation

Value Statement: Describes the overall, top-level priorities for how an organisation chooses to conduct its activities and to be viewed by the public, for example, integrity, efficiency and reliability.

Value Stream Map (VSM): A process improvement tool used to visually map and measure the value flow of product or services. It compares the current 'a' and future 'B' state of processes identifying opportunities for the removal of waste and process variation to improve an organisation's process.

Vision: See ‘Change Vision’.

Vision Statement: A vivid and compelling description of the organisation and its customers at some time in the future. It depicts a long-term, inspirational and strategic vision, which represents the organisation and customers shortly after the strategic plan has been implemented.

White Lie Coach©: A coach who will not tell the coachee about their true competence and behaviour in order to be polite or to stop them from being upset so they receive payment for their work. Unfortunately, this approach creates unconscious incompetence, limiting the person and their organisation's performance. In many cases, this creates deluded leaders and the sheep that follow in abundance.

WIIFM (What’s In It For Me): This concept focuses on the likelihood of employee acceptance. The basic premise of this acronym is that when the result of an action is in the best interests of an employee, they are more likely to choose to do it.

Work Stream: A team or group of individuals who complete a common set of activities or tasks as part of a bigger change programme.

Yes People: Employees, both male and female who agree with deluded leaders when they know that this will damage or delay change implementation.

Yes Men: See 'Yes People'.

If you find our change management glossary, please consider buying our paperbacks and electronic books.

Leadership of Change®

Change Management Body of Knowledge (CMBoK)

Volumes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, A, B, C, D & E

Change Management Body of Knowledge (CMBoK), Leadership of Change® Body of Knowledge, Peter F Gallagher, Change Management Books, Leadership of Change Volumes 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 A B C D E, Change Management Fables, Change Management Pocket Guide, Change Management Handbook, Change Management Gamification, Change Management Adoption, Change Management Behaviour, Change Management Leadership, Change Management Sponsorship,
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