Managing change in turbulent times
Munro, Pauline (2009)


by Pauline Munro

The purpose of this paper is to present the initial findings of research exploring the process and management of change as experienced by Chief Executive Officers affiliated with ACOSVO. The central themes explored are drivers for change, experience of change, identifying and overcoming barriers to change, and resultant success.

An online survey was conducted with ACOSVO members regarding the nature, progress, consequences and perceived success of their change efforts. These findings illustrated the often rapid nature of change which must be managed by inclusion of stakeholders. Effective, unambiguous communication coupled with a clear rationale was cited as the most fruitful approach to initiate and introduce change in a non-threatening, positive way. All respondents considered their past and present change efforts to have been successful.

The themes of the questionnaire were then explored with individual chief executives to provide more contextual and operational detail. This was achieved by a series of one to one interviews where drivers of change, outcomes and operational analysis were discussed. In harmony with the survey findings there was significant emphasis on communication, trust and the need to have all stakeholders on board. This was deemed to be essential in order to work within volatile funding environments and required legislation.

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