Overall Project Mission
The overall project mission was to implement a standardized evaluation process for all Associate Principals in this global management consulting firm. Traditionally, most of the evaluation process was conducted on an office or practice basis. The results of the office or practice process were then submitted to a global Evaluation Committee to determine the final assessment. However, the office/practice process resulted in inconsistent evaluations and was highly inefficient. By implementing a standardized process, these issues would be addressed.
The Change Management Challenge
The implementation of the new evaluation process significantly affected multiple groups of people across the firm. The key groups included approximately 600 Principals, 500 Associate Principals, 80 Office Managing Partners, 100 Professional Development Managers, a 20-member Evaluation Committee, and 7,000 Client Service Staff in the firm. Each of these groups has different roles in the evaluation process, are located in various countries, and some are mostly at a client site. For the new process to be successful, these varied groups need to adopt and embrace the change.
The overall change management program was designed to manage organizational issues. These issues were identified using stakeholder analysis to identify; the key stakeholders, the level of influence they have on the process, their key concerns, and how to address them. The resulting change management program consisted of four phases to ensure the communication was tailored to the desired goals of the phase and according to each stakeholder.
Call for Support
The support of the Evaluation Committee was key in ensuring the support of other stakeholders. Thus, several meetings were held with the Committee Chair and other members to ensure they were fully aware of the potential benefits and the need for their support in the implementation. With their buy-in, the team drafted emails for the Chair to send to the various Office Managing Partners and Principals about the new process.
The team developed a tiered communication plan to share information with the large number of stakeholders. The plan took into account the most effective sender and mediums of communication. For example, in most offices, Associate Principals look to the Office Managing Partner for promotion and the Professional Development Manager for career development. Therefore, based on the content of the message, the team requested either the Office Managing Partner or the Professional Development Manager to send an email/vmail or to discuss it in a meeting with the Associate Principals.
Call for Action
When the time came to start using the new process, the team developed training materials and rolled out the new process. Given that most of the users of the system were non-technical, the team ensured that technology would not be a barrier to adoption by providing email and telephone support on a global basis.
During the process, the team requested the Committee to ensure adherence from the Principals and Associate Principals. Additionally, to alleviate administrative workload, the team conducted conference calls and demos with the administrative assistants of the Committee members and Principals.