Organisational Change Implementation Challenges


"There are many challenges that organisations consistently face before implementing change, such as leadership alignment, normal day-to-day operations, and organisation change capability"

Lots of statistics show organisational change and transformations failing to deliver their intended benefits. You can argue about the true percentage of success, but the fact is that many organisations do not achieve full benefits realisation, and in many cases, they fail to attain a return on investment (ROI). Equally unacceptable to shareholders is that the vision is not realised, meaning the organisation’s strategy has not been executed. Even when the organisation and its leadership team agree the changes are necessary for the future of the organisation, they still face a number of consistent and specific challenges).

Challenges and barriers can be listed into two main categories:

Consistent Challenges Throughout Change Implementation:

  • Normal Day-to-Day Operations: Balancing urgent daily operational activities that need to be completed against important strategic change management activities.
  • Leadership: Leaders not fully supporting the change in terms of their responsibilities.
  • Organisation Change Capability: Organisations constantly facing change recognise they need to use internal capabilities and have a standard approach.

Specific Challenges Throughout Change Implementation:

  • Too Many Change Initiatives: Not enough capacity to deliver ongoing and new change programmes.
  • Inactive or Invisible Sponsorship: Lack of visible support usually leads to change failure.
  • Poor Previous Change History: This increases the likelihood of repeating past mistakes.
  • No Detailed Project Change Plan: Implementing change with only a communication plan and not aligning it to the master project plan.
  • Poor Communication: Lack of engagement and communication.
  • Ignoring Change ReadinessInput: If the change readinessassessment indicates the organisation is not ready then the change should not be implemented.
  • Thinking there is No Resistance: There will always be resistance even if it is not overt!
  • Ignoring the Importance of Behaviours: If you do not change employee behaviour, you will not get organisational change.
  • Thinking Employees will Adopt the Change: Employees will need to be supported throughout the change by the leadership team, so adoption is maximised.
  • Not Transferring Ownership: Not closing the change properly by using a structured process to ensure sustainment and benefits delivery.

Blog Source:

Peter consults, speaks, and writes on the Leadership of Change®. For further reading please visit our websites: Peter F Gallagher: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle

Leadership of Change® Body of Knowledge Volumes: Change Management Body of Knowledge (CMBoK) Books: Volumes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, A, B, & C available on both Amazon and Google Play:

Leadership of Change® Volume 1 - Change Management Fables

Leadership of Change® Volume 2 - Change Management Pocket Guide

Leadership of Change® Volume 3 - Change Management Handbook

Leadership of Change® Volume 4 - Change Management Leadership

Leadership of Change® Volume 5 - Change Management Adoption

Leadership of Change® Volume 6 - Change Management Behaviour

Leadership of Change® Volume 7 - Change Management Sponsorship

Leadership of Change® Volume A - Change Management Gamification - Leadership

Leadership of Change® Volume B - Change Management Gamification - Adoption

Coming soon:

Leadership of Change® Volume C - Change Management Gamification - Behaviour

~ Leadership of Change® Volume D - Change Management Gamification - Sponsorship

~ Leadership of Change® Volume E - Change Management Gamification - Leadership Teams

By Peter F Gallagher

Keywords: Business Strategy, Change Management, Leadership

Share this article