Have you ever wondered what conditions impact the success of your project? What determines if your team is prepared for change or innovation? At The Dawn Chorus Group, we specialize in these crucial questions and more. We are experts in evaluating and building readiness within teams. We have found that readiness is not a static construct but a dynamic and fluid one, crucial in achieving high-quality outcomes.
Change is a Process, not an Event
Understanding why readiness matters is the key to successful change implementation. Readiness is not a one-time preparation for change; it is a continuous process integral to every stage of development. Change, after all, isn’t a singular decision but an ongoing series of decisions maintained over time. People’s motivation and capacities to implement change can fluctuate, reinforcing the necessity for continuous readiness.
Further, readiness is not stagnant; it is dynamic and varies with changing circumstances. Conditions fostering successful implementation can shift unpredictably. Hence, the ability to respond and adapt to such changes directly contributes to the effectiveness of an initiative. Gene Hall has written extensively on this in an incredible book that we always go back to.
Readiness is also innovation-specific. Each new undertaking requires a unique set of knowledge, skills, and specific motivational triggers. For instance, a community coalition may show high readiness for a nutrition program but lower readiness for an obesity prevention program. Both target improved health, but each demands different expertise and motivators. Therefore, we must avoid presuming that the ability to excel in one area implies the capacity to pivot quickly to another related area.
Our work here is influenced by the writing and research of Paul Flaspohler, who wrote one of our all-time favorite articles, Unpacking Prevention Capacity: An Intersection of Research-to-practice Models and Community-centered Models
Levels within Organizational Levels
We’ve also noted that readiness applies at different organizational levels, reflecting diverse perspectives within an organization. Top leaders may lack complete awareness of frontline challenges, and frontline professionals may lack a comprehensive understanding of organization-wide initiatives or visions. We often observe readiness differences across organizational roles, which can significantly influence planning and implementation strategies. Consequently, thinking about readiness at the appropriate level and facilitating negotiation between levels is paramount to effective planning.
The good news is that readiness can be built. Change management is a longstanding field of study, and although challenging, it can be navigated more effectively when the conditions that facilitate change are considered. Change is a process, and dissecting it into specific components helps tailor strategies to those components, creating conditions conducive to change.
At The Dawn Chorus Group, we believe in the power of change facilitators. We can align your team’s readiness with evidence-based strategies, empowering you to build and maintain readiness over time. Together, we can make change manageable and success achievable.