Central Banks Need Agility in Times of Changes

November 26, 2019 by Natalia Zabolotnii

Why is it important to manage change? And why do it in an intelligent manner, with care for people which will be affected by change? Why is it so important to deliver the change with a story behind? All these questions were discussed at the workshop on Human Resource Management for Central Banks: Change Management and Leadership, organized by the CEF in October 2019. The workshop brought together participants from different central banks, engaged in human resources management and being part of change projects. At the workshop, we talked about different change management models and their applicability to central banks.

One of the most suitable models of change management for central banks is considered the PROSCI ADKAR* model. According to this model, change management is the process, tools and techniques to manage the people side of change in order to achieve the required business results. It considers several steps of performing change, from preparation for change to reinforce of change. The advantages of this model consist in application of tools oriented to people management during the change, rather than the technical side of the change project. The more you involve the employees in the change management process from raising awareness to deployment and propagation of change, the more it will be embraced by all teams in the bank. Consequently, the results will be more valuable.

A key aspect of change management is communication. Here, we need to bring to each person affected by change their personal benefit from change. It may be an easier way of working, or a qualitative change from manual work to a more analytical one. This means individual professional development and new career opportunities. The more you communicate when changing, the smaller is the fear of change and resistance to it. In this regard, communication is easier with a true and simple story behind.

The role of the HR department in change management becomes more and more important. Knowing people and their formal and informal roles in the organization, the HR department may assume the role of a business partner and intermediary between those who lead the change and those that will be part of change. It is easier for HR to identify change promoters and find motivation for those who resist to change.

Therefore, in applying PROSCI ADKAR model in change management, as well as any other model in this regard, it is crucial to involve the HR department at the earliest stage of any project, from the planning phase to deployment and reinforcement.

A communication plan is one of the tools used for people management during the change. It needs to consider all the stakeholders of the project – the management, experts, labor representatives, the media and social media, the civil society and the government, if that is the case – and the important messages to deliver at each stage of the project. When you keep all the stakeholders informed, they receive the information in the way you intend to, avoiding misunderstanding when provided by intermediaries.

When discussing the change management models presented during the workshop, we came to the conclusion that whatever model is applied, change needs to be managed with a focus on people and the organization, entailing a win-win approach. Lessons learned shared during the workshop confirmed this conclusion.

*The Prosci ADKAR® Model is one of the most widely requested and sought-after models for change management. Backed by 20 years of Prosci research, the model is based on the common—yet often overlooked—reality that organizational change only happens when individuals change. – www.prosci.com/adkar