9 Change Management Skills (And How To Highlight Them)

Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 30 September 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Organisational changes occur for a variety of reasons. For businesses to navigate change, competent change management professionals are critical. If a company is planning to change, you may assist in its success by applying your change management abilities. In this article, we define change management skills, list several examples of such skills, share tips to improve these skills and offer tips to highlight these skills in resumes, cover letters and job interviews.

What Are Change Management Skills?

Change management skills are abilities that can assist a company in making organisational changes. Good change management is crucial to a company's success. An organisational change can include the following:

  • Transitional change: Transitional changes are changes that a company makes to change how it operates but maintains most of its current state.

  • Transformational change: Transformational changes involve a complete change of a company's current operations.

  • Developmental change: Developmental changes are changes that companies make to improve their existing operations.

9 Important Change Management Skills

Here are nine important skills for change management:

1. Leadership

Leadership is an important aspect of change management. It is critical to guide employees through organisational changes and delegate responsibilities to suitable individuals. Leadership qualities include:

  • Vision: When leaders have a clear vision of the organisational change, it is easier to express what you aim for the company to accomplish.

  • Motivation: Good leadership skills can help motivate employees to fulfil their roles in a change.

  • Honesty and transparency: Being open with your employees about why the organisation is changing can increase their commitment to the change.

Related: 12 Ways To Build Leadership Strategies At The Workplace

2. Communication

Great change management requires excellent communication. It is critical to inform employees why the business is changing and what information they require to perform their jobs. To accomplish this, you can create a clear and concise notification that communicates to all organisation members about the changes. It is also crucial to check in with employees regularly during the transition to answer their questions and provide feedback on the progress.

3. Organisation

Organisation is an important ability that can help with change management. Organising a range of information, such as personnel responsibilities, project goals, deadlines and other critical information, is necessary to create a clear change management plan. Understanding how to use planning software to manage the details of the company's future transformation can be very helpful in the proper execution of the plan.

Related: What Is Organisational Behaviour? (Examples And Advantages)

4. Active listening

An important requirement for successful change management is active listening. Throughout the organisational change process, paying attention to employee feedback is crucial. This can assist the business in making a change that all involved parties support, resulting in a more effective transition. Making time to listen to suggestions and actively seek feedback from staff is one way you can use these skills.

5. Research

You can assist an organisation's plan for change by honing your research skills. To develop suggestions for organisational changes and examine change management strategies and procedures employed by other businesses. You can also study the organisation's history and data trends to build an effective strategy.

Related: 8 Types Of Research Jobs (With Duties And Average Salary)

6. Project management

Change management can benefit greatly from project management skills. Project management experience can help you grasp all aspects of achieving an organisational change, including the change management plan, resources, outcomes, accountability and other factors. Skills in project management can also assist you in evaluating the change, determining how to keep it on track and measuring progress.

7. Analytical skills

Change management requires analytic abilities. These abilities can help you understand your research and make the best decisions for the business. For example, you can use financial data from your organisation to assess how a proposed change can influence future sales.

8. Strategic thinking

Strategic thinking is an important ability for developing a change management strategy. Understanding the organisation's needs and how a change may affect them is critical. You can create a robust plan to guide the organisation through a transition. An effective strategy can include:

  • A timeline of the change

  • Specific tasks required to make the change

  • Responsibilities delegation to each employee

  • A deadline or list of milestones for the transition to be complete

Related: Creating Thinking: Definition, Development And Advantages

9. Performance analysis

Effective change management requires tracking progress to ensure that the change achieves the desired outcomes. You can identify and analyse the key performance indicators (KPIs) used to assess the project's success with its objectives. This can help you know with high certainty about the change's effect and can prove your results if you measure KPIs both before and after the change.

4 Tips To Improve Your Change Management Skills

It is important to develop your skills as your career progresses. Here are some ways to help you enhance your change management abilities:

1. Prioritise skills

It is beneficial for change management professionals to prioritise the skills they wish to improve to concentrate their efforts. Consider the skills or behaviours you want to enhance and create a list of those abilities. If you are unsure of which abilities to improve, consult a colleague. Then rank each skill on your list to assist you in selecting one or two characteristics to enhance. Once you have mastered those characteristics, you can focus on other skills.

2. Learn about other businesses

You can improve your skills by reading about other companies' change management experiences. Try reading books, articles, case studies or blogs about change management to get more insight and information. You can adapt what other organisations have learnt to your circumstance.

3. Practice

It is critical to practice a skill to improve your ability to apply them effectively in the workplace. Each week, plan and schedule a time to work on a skill. It may also be beneficial to ask others for help in practising your skills. For instance, if you want to enhance your written communication skills, you can learn and apply them in your regular workplace communication.

4. Find a mentor

You can look for a mentor to help you learn more about change management. You can ask about your mentor's change management experience and how they handled various scenarios. They can also give you advice tailored to your firm that can assist you in making key decisions and implementing change successfully.

Related: What Is A Mentor And How To Find The Right One For You

Change Management Abilities In The Workplace

Change management capabilities can be extremely useful when businesses are preparing to undergo changes. You may collaborate with other departments of the company to make the best decisions when planning to implement a change. Here are some instances of how change management abilities can apply in the workplace:

  • Writing: You can utilise written communication skills to write a thorough change management plan, which is essential for implementing an organisational change.

  • Goals setting: Skills in change management can help you set measurable goals for organisational changes to help keep employees on track.

  • Communication: Communicate change management plans effectively to team members so they can understand the purpose of the organisational change and their responsibilities in the transition.

  • Leadership and delegation: Allocating duties to staff to complete a change project on time can demonstrate your leadership, delegation and time management skills. Communicate openly so that your team understands their responsibilities and provide constructive feedback to improve overall performance.

  • Collaboration: Encourage your team members to work on common goals by utilising your team management and dispute resolution skills. You may teach your employees how to work in a team by promoting open communication and collaborating with team members to effectively handle the transition stage of any change.

Ways To Highlight Your Skills For A Change Management Role

Here are a few tips for highlighting your change management abilities in your resume and cover letter and job interviews:

In a resume

Include a detailed skills section on your resume, highlighting your change management abilities. Make a bulleted list of your skills, focusing on the most relevant ones to the position you are applying for. A few abilities you may include are communication and problem-solving and strategic thinking.

In a cover letter

Many organisations ask candidates to include a cover letter while applying, which gives you a great opportunity to share additional information about yourself. In your cover letter, discuss your key change management abilities and how you have used them in the past role. Showing a recruiter how your skills have resulted in great outcomes and how you can assist their organisation can help you demonstrate your suitability for the job.

In a job interview

You can highlight your change management abilities in a job interview by mentioning instances of how you have used them in past roles. Consider telling the interviewer about a recent change in your workplace and how you used your skills to manage it. This can help you make a positive impression on an interviewer by demonstrating how you can assist their organisation. You can consider using the situation, task, action, result (STAR) approach while answering situation-based questions to make your answer clear and effective.

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