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The case for change management: results and outcomes

In Prosci's 2007 and 2009 benchmarking studies, the top trend identified by study participants was a greater recognition of the need for and value of change management. While some find themselves in a situation where change management is being requested, many other practitioners are still working diligently to make a compelling case for the need for change management. For these practitioners, Prosci is releasing a five part series on the case for change management. Learn how to effectively "sell" change management to project leaders and executives in your organization by directly connecting change management to project and organizational outcomes.

This is the first tutorial of the series and will provide an overview and context for making the case for change management. The upcoming tutorials in the series will address specific tactics along with data and frameworks you can use to make the case for change management on the projects and initiatives that you support.


Context - the foundation of your case

"The case for change management is inextricably connected to project and organizational success. If you are not talking about achieving results, then you are having the wrong conversation." ~ Tim Creasey, Prosci Chief Development Officer

When you are approached with the question, "what is the value of change management?" - how do you respond? Do you talk about how important communications are? Do you talk about training? Do you refer to resistance? Or do you talk about project results and organizational success?

The bottom line is the bottom line when it comes to making the case for change management. When you are convincing project leaders or senior leaders about the importance of change management, you must link the work you do managing the people side of change to one thing: results. Change management is, in the end, a tool for delivering results.

Below are four perspectives for connecting change management to delivering outcomes and results. Each of these perspectives will be built upon in subsequent tutorials.


Role of the individual in successful change

Organizational change ultimately comes to life one person at a time. Said another way, the individual is the unit of change. If changes are only successful when individuals do their jobs differently, then a structured approach for supporting individual change is central to projects delivering expected improvement.

Read more in the tutorial: The individual is the unit of change

The data supporting the value of change management

A growing body of data shows that with more effective change management, projects are more likely to meet objectives, finish on time and finish on budget. An important "upside" to applying change management is improving the likelihood of success, and the data is quite clear about the correlation.

Read more in the tutorial: Correlating success and change management effectiveness

Three "people side" of change ROI factors

When projects or initiatives impact how people do their jobs, there are human factors that directly contribute to or constrain the ROI (Return on Investment) of that project. Prosci's ROI of Change Management Model presents the three human factors that define ROI as: speed of adoption (how quickly people make the change), ultimate utilization (how many of them make the change) and proficiency (how effective they are after making the change).

Read more in the tutorial: Three people side ROI factors

Costs and risks of poorly managing change

When the people side of change is not managed effectively, projects and initiatives experience higher costs and greater risks than when change management is done well. Costs and risks apply to the project and to the organization as a whole. Applying a holistic, structured approach to change management is both a cost avoidance and risk mitigation technique.

Read more in the tutorial: Costs and risks of poorly managing change



Who are you making the case to?

The case for change management will be made with numerous audiences in your organization. You may be having the conversation with an executive or senior leader who has launched a change and has the ability to ensure that change management is applied. You may be speaking with a project leader who is working diligently to solve a technical problem, but has not started thinking about the people side of the change. You may be speaking with a communications professional that you will be partnering with on a particular initiative. Or you may be speaking with an internal consultant who has been tasked with change management on a new project.

The important takeaway here is that the way you tell the story about the value of change management will depend on your audience, their relationship to change and what they care about. The key to making your case for change management compelling is linking directly to their own concerns and success.

Think about the two most common "audiences" of the case for change management and what they are concerned with:

Executives and senior leaders:

  • Concerned with: financial and strategic goals
  • The question you must answer: How can you connect managing the people side of change to meeting financial and strategic goals?

Project leaders, managers and teams:

  • Concerned with: delivering a successful project that improves the organization, on time and within budget
  • The question you must answer: How can you connect managing the people side of change to project delivery?


With a combination of the approaches above, you can connect effective change management to financial performance, strategic goals and project delivery. And when you begin to speak the language that your audience cares about, you are well on your way to building support for change management.



Goal is to get people side of change on the radar

Your goal is to ensure that the people side of change is considered and addressed on the projects and initiatives you support. By creating an Awareness of the need for change management and a Desire to participate and support change management (pulling from Prosci's ADKAR® Model), you have taken the first steps to ensuring change management is applied on the projects that you support in your organization.

When you make the connection between change management and results and outcomes, you move change management from a "nice to have" to a "must have" - earning yourself a seat at the table in the project success discussion.



Read the complete case for change management series:

Module 2 - The individual is the unit of change

Module 3 - Correlating success and change management effectiveness

Module 4 - ROI of change management

Module 5 - Costs and risk of poorly managing change




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Order online - secure server Order the Change Management Toolkit or Change Management Pilot for complete change management assessments, templates, guidelines and plans



Prosci Change Management Certification

Program highlights:
  • Apply the methodology as you learn it on a real project
  • Learn from experienced executive instructors
  • Become part of a change management community
  • Earn 2.4 CEUs, 24 PDUs and 23.5 HRCI recertification credits
  • Walk away with products and course materials worth over $1000

Download the certification program brochure

Upcoming sessions with availability:

  • Dec 20 - 22, 2011: San Francisco, CA area
  • Jan 24 - 26, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • Jan 24 - 26, 2012: Denver, CO area
  • Feb 14 - 16, 2012: Washington, DC area
  • Feb 14 - 16, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • Feb 28 - Mar 1, 2012: Chicago, IL area
  • Feb 28 - Mar 1, 2012: Orlando, FL area
  • March 6 - 8, 2012: Orlando, FL area
  • March 13 - 15, 2012: San Francisco, CA area
  • March 13 - 15, 2012: Houston, TX area
  • March 20 - 22, 2012: Denver, CO area
  • March 27 - 29, 2012: Washington, DC area

Visit the certification training page

Email a certification inquiry or call
970-203-9332 to register today.

"The best training class I have had in years. Goes way beyond the strategy and framework and focuses on real world problems and the tools to solve them."
- Jennifer J., April 2009 participant

"This was the most effective and engaging course I've ever taken. I feel that I can truly use this knowledge in my personal and professional life immediately."
- Lisa S., February 2009 participant

"Awesome - truly one of the most beneficial programs I have ever attended - immediate application on the job!"
- Robin S., March 2009 participant

"This program absolutely over-delivered my expectations. I now feel more prepared and better equipped to do my job."
- Paul S., January 2009 participant



Offerings for applying Prosci's change management methodologies:


  • Change management certification ($2800)- 3-day program where you bring a project you are working on and apply all of the assessments and tools as you learn them - taught by former fortune 500 executives at locations across the US - includes over $1000 in products, including the Best Practices in Change Management benchmarking report, the Change Management Toolkit and the Change Management Pilot Pro 2010
  • Train-the-trainer ($3500) - learn how to teach Prosci change management training programs in your organization
  • Onsite training - bring Prosci to your location for 3-day certification programs, 4-6 hour executive briefings, 1-day manager programs or 1-day employee programs - call +1-970-203-9332 for more information

Methodology tools:

  • Change Management Toolkit ($389) - hardcopy 3-ring binder presenting Prosci's change management methodology, includes templates, checklists and assessments for managing the people side of change (includes USB drive)
  • Change Management Pilot Pro 2010 ($449) - online tool including Prosci's change management methodology, eLearning modules and downloadable templates, assessments, presentations and checklists
  • Change Management Guide for Managers and Supervisors ($189) - tools to help supervisors engage and coach their direct reports through change (includes 4 copies of the Employee's Survival Guide)
  • PCT Analyzer ($149/$349) - web-based tool for collecting PCT Assessment data, analyzing results, identifying risks and developing action steps

References and books:

  • Best Practices in Change Management benchmarking report ($289 / quantity discounts available) - journal-style report with lessons learned and best practices from 650 participants, presented in an easy-to-use format - reads as a checklist of what to do and what not to do
  • Change Management: the people side of change ($18.95 / quantity discounts available) - a primer for anyone involved in organizational change that addresses why manage change, individual change management and organizational change management
  • ADKAR: a model for change ($18.95 / quantity discounts available) - the definitive work on Prosci's ADKAR® Model
  • Employee's Survival Guide to Change ($14.95 / quantity discounts available) - a handbook to help employees survive and thrive during change, answers frequently asked questions and empowers employees to take charge of change



*** Prosci also offers leadership packages - groupings of products at discounts that offer you some of the most helpful and common combinations of Prosci change management resources



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