Managing the one constant – are you change ready?

Last Thursday in Birmingham we had a great KN-UK session by Graham Mitchell of T2i on change management, giving advice (a lot of theory, but also *a lot* of practical advice) about how our KN-UK members could manage change a little better within their firms.

Without a struggle, there can be no progress. - Frederick Douglass

Serendipitously, this morning I saw this link on twitter to an article by 3geeks, on change management (it’s worth a read).

We talked a lot on Thursday about the special problems that the partnership model causes to change programmes and tools and techniques to help us attempt to overcome them, which is highlighted in the 3geeks post as a big block to change.

I think my main takeaways from the session were:

  • The need to acknowledge, anticipate and deal with the emotions “changes” cause – it’s not something lawyers are terribly good at – we’re much better at plans and strategies. Keep on trying to understand and meet people’s needs. Keep communicating, and keep on reminding them of the reasons for the change and how they will personally benefit.
  • Larger “changes” need to be well planned and resourced – if you are going to drag people from that “burning platform” into a new way of working, you have to make them trust that you are doing the right thing. You must do all you can to make them comfortable whilst they change, which requires understanding, but also resources.
  • The importance (as with a lot of KM projects) of top flight sponsorship, but also engagement from your informal network. That informal network is also a great sense-check on your plans, as well as a way to persuade waiverers and demonstrate right behaviours.

If you were there, what were your top three takeaways?


Learn more about KN-UK’s annual programme of affordable training for law firms here.

If you are interested in KN-UK, make sure you sign up to the mailing list and get advance notice of the events and a link to the Autumn annual survey, so you can make sure that the following year’s annual programme meets your needs.

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About knowledge4lawyers

I am a lawyer and a Knowledge Management expert. Through The Knowledge Business I help law firms improve their efficiency and profitability through knowledge services - consultancy, training and implementation help.
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