PM Strategies to Lead Effective Transitions

The role of transition leader is frequently overlooked but important aspect of program management. There are several keys that you can use to be a top performer.

· Gains support from and confidence of others. Change is not accepted and work cannot be done without the buy-in of key stakeholders. Building support early and frequently is a key to ensuring you have management, customers, team members or shareholders when needed

· Collaborate effectively. No matter how good a manager is, people will not follow without a sense of ownership in the organization. Working together at all levels of organization is critical. People look to see results and your ability to get results effectively and break through roadblocks. This is a fundamental to rapid results. In order to collaborate effectively, you need to focus on building relationships with customers, peers, and project team members.

· Takes accountability. As with any effective manager,successful transition leaders take accountability for their own work as well as that of the entire team that he or she manages. If the transition is structure change, project change, team member change there will be a lot of changing elements. To be viewed as the leader, you need to take accountability for the good and bad and keep communication strong.

· Inspires and motivates sponsor, stakeholder, customers and team. In order to manage change effectively in the organization, transition leaders need to have inspired employees and stakeholders. This can be a challenge as many people will view change as negative. The one constant these days is change, so helping people

· Communicates openly and often. Since change is such a complex and fearsome idea for process what it means and connect to what they do and contribute will mitigate the effect and keep project moving forward as it needs to. For most people, it is important for transition leaders to open the flow of communication and let people know what is undecided and what is decided so they are not left to speculation, rumors and growing fear develops. This holds true on a day-to-day basis as well and just becomes more critical during times of change.

· Provides clear direction. People want to know where program or project is headed. They want to know what roles and responsibilities are and they want to do a good job. Often, there can be a lot of distracters and inhibitors to people doing a good job. Stakeholders also need to understand where they are and where the organization is going. The action you can take leading through change is to link vision to goals of program and keep defining and redefining so people can understand and work to the needed results

· Create a culture of urgency – Often change becomes worse when prolonged as it can create a wait and see operating style. Creating the platform of why and what must be done with urgency will help force resolution and implementation more quickly.

· Creates opportunities for wins. The change involved in large scale and complex IT implementations often appears insurmountable to employees. Define interim goals and wins the team and individuals can celebrate. It is important to frequently reward and recognize team members to help boost morale and to keep change initiatives from failing due to a burned-out staff. It will help build momentum and feeling of accomplishment over long term projects.

Change is a constant. You can implement simple strategies to assist surviving tough transition and being the leader to help team thrive through change. It is important to practice these on a regular basis but step it up in a big way through transition times. It will ensure you delivery High Payoff Projects!


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