In our series of articles on the reorganisation of church administrations, we have named the principles of good administration, outlined a target picture for modern administration and described processes as the core of administrative action. This sets the cornerstones for a project to reorganise the administration of church organisations.
Such a project entails major changes for the day-to-day work and the working environment of the employees. Thus, the reorganisation of church administration is a great challenge for the organisation as a whole. Experience shows that reorganisation projects rarely fail due to the lack of professional expertise of those involved or a poor analysis of the possibilities for improvement, but rather due to resistance and challenges in the concrete implementation of changes. This can be countered with professional change management.
People need time to adjust to change; they want to understand how the change will affect their working environment. Therefore, it is important to communicate the identified need for change early and in an understandable way. In internal communication, in meetings and staff meetings, an awareness can be created that changes are necessary. As a rule, dissatisfaction can be picked up from the ranks of the employees, who often have a sense themselves when something is "not running smoothly". At this stage of a change project, it is important to radiate security and strengthen trust. Clear goals, understandable messages and the recognisable conviction of the management level help to contain uncertainty and reduce resistance.
If there is awareness of the pressure to change, employees should be mobilised for the change project. This is best done with target group-specific communication. An important tool for this is a so-called communication matrix. This lists all stakeholders and participants of a project and notes their attitude to the project as well as their influence on the project. Based on this, the respective communication formats can be planned and controlled. In this phase, the focus is thus on motivating the employees by involving them in the change, getting them actively involved and thus enabling them to take responsibility for the project. Employees who show particular commitment can be entrusted with special tasks by the project management and thus become ambassadors of change.
After sensitisation and mobilisation, it is crucial to implement the changes permanently and sustainably in the organisation. Training for employees and quick partial successes are instruments to keep acceptance of the change high. Especially in the development of new routines, the consolidation of newly developed processes and responsibilities, a lot of commitment is required from those responsible to prevent falling back into old patterns. In view of the complexity of reorganisation projects, it becomes clear that professional change management is an indispensable complement to classic project management.
We are happy to support you with our interdisciplinary team and broad experience in the church sector and look forward to accompanying you in your next project.
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Director, Consulting, Öffentlicher Sektor
KPMG AG Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft