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How's it going to be different when I've made the change? - The Blueprint
by Stephen Warrilow

In considering any step change initiative - in any organisation, in any sector and any location, we need to be asking and seeking answers to these simple questions:

- How am I going to manage all this so that it happens and I succeed?
- How's it going to be different when I've made the change?
- Why am I doing this - how's it going to benefit me?
- How will I know it's benefited me? - Who's it going to affect and how will they react?
- What can I do to get them "on side"?
- What steps do I have to take to make the changes and get the benefit?
- What are the risks and issues that I'll have to face?

The Blueprint is just a fancy term for a description of how your organisation is going to look after the step change.

As you create a change programme, the more detail and clarity you have about this, the greater the chance you have of being able to communicate it to your staff and customers - and the higher the possibility that you will actually achieve it.

I often ask people directors how they envisage their organisation looking after the change - and all too often the answers are fairly vague - or expressed in terms of "bigger", "better", "closer to customers", "more efficient / profitable / cash flow..." etc.

You need to know precisely:

- How?
- Where?
- When?
- Why?

...The changed organisation will be different.

The Blueprint is a clear, defined documentation of your changed organisation - after the completion of the Programme and the delivery of the benefits.

In other words - this is the capability - and the "where we want to be" - that you described in the Pre Programme Review and Planning process. It is used actively in a structured manner to maintain focus on the delivery of the new capability throughout the duration of your Programme. It takes the review process further and provides a detailed description of what the changed organisation looks like in terms of:

- Organisation structure, staffing levels, roles and skill requirements necessary to support the future business operations
- Cultural changes and the specific definitions, characteristics, actions and behaviours that will define the new or changed culture
- Business models of the new functions, processes and operations
- Information systems, tools, equipment, buildings, required for the future business operations
- The data required for the future business operations
- Costs, performance and service levels for the support required for the future business operations

With the possible exception of the "Benefits Profile" [i.e. the definition of the benefits of your change initiative] , the Blueprint is the single most important document in your whole change initiative.

If you don't know what it's going to look like - how on earth will you know when you've got there? And even more to the point - how can you expect your people to buy-in to and fully support your change initiative?

For more on this - see here: "How to manage change - putting it all together"

Stephen Warrilow may be contacted at

I invite you to visit my informational website packed full of useful and unique practical information on all key aspects of change management to: (1) Take advantage of these 7 FREE "How to Do It" downloads that will take you through all of the key stages of how to manage change - and show you how to manage successfully: (2) Find out the 3 main reasons for the 70% failure rate of all step change initiatives and how to avoid it.

- Visit: Stephen Warrilow, based in Bristol, works with companies across the UK providing specialist support to directors delivery significant change initiatives. Stephen has 25 years cross sector experience with 100+ companies in mid range corporate, larger SME and corporate environments.



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