Thursday, 4 February 2010

The final session before lunch focused on resistance to change across the public sector...

Sir Michael Bichard argued that we need to help people understand why change is happening. It is important that we understand that most people are tired of structural change and that there is no evidence that it works anyway! Instead, Michael argued that we need to redesign our services around the citizen and wok hard to help people understand that the future is going to be very different. We also need to understand that all the evidence suggests that the most effective and efficient strategies often come from the front line. We mustn't underestimate the energy needed to manage change within organisations. We need to pace change to enable things to be managed more effectively and we need to build trust while we avoid creating a blame culture where change agents constantly criticise past performance. People need confidence in the people managing the change and we must constantly and systematically reward and celebrate anything that supports the change process.

Professor Christopher Hood argued that change per se is neither good or bad and doesn't necessarily work. Structural change is generally a disaster and we need to focus instead on culture, people and behaviours. We also need to explore what makes good change and stop the debate about the public/private dichotomy because the world is not that simple. The most interesting organisations are most often found in the margins and the overlaps. The grown up debate is about what kinds of organisations are best placed and best suited to effect the changes we want to see.

No comments: