What is Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model, and what are best practices, tools and templates for teams and organizations?
Definition of Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model
Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model is an eight step process that assists managers in implementing successful change programs in their organizations. The eight steps include: create urgency, form a powerful coalition, create a vision for change, communicate the vision, remove obstacles, create short-term wins, build on the change, and anchor the changes in corporate culture.
Description of Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model
The aim of Kotter’s Change Model is to aid managers in creating real change rather than simply creating messages about the need for change.The eight steps of Kotter’s model overlap so managers should be cautious not to progress linearly through them:
- Create Urgency – Develop a message that conveys the necessity of change. This can be accomplished by constructing scenarios that convey what could happen if the organization does not change, establish what threats are currently facing the organization, create conversations surrounding change, or garner support from customers or outside sources.
- Form a Powerful Coalition – Gather a group of individuals from several departments within the organization at different levels who support the change. Engage in some team building exercises to ensure that the coalition is cohesive.
- Create a Vision for Change – Create a succinct description of what the organization should look like in the future and develop a plan for getting the organization to that point. Additionally, ensure that the vision can be applied to all aspects of organizational functioning. Make sure that each member of the coalition feels included in creating that description and feels comfortable describing it to others.
- Communicate the Vision – The vision should be mentioned as often as possible and in all situations (i.e., formal as well as informal settings) so that individuals remember it and start to support it. It is also important to attend to others’ concerns with the vision or the change in general.
- Remove Obstacles – Identify and adjust any aspect of the organization that is misaligned with the vision (e.g., job descriptions, compensation, performance management systems etc.). If certain employees of the organization are resisting the change, talk with them about what can be done to make them more comfortable.
- Create Short-Term Wins – It is important that the process of implementing large-scale changes includes short-term goals so that resistant or pessimistic employees can see that the change is working and supporters of the change continue to be motivated. However, ensure that short-term goals are relevant to the change-making process so as to not waste time and money.
- Build on the Change – After any small success, determine what was done well and can be refined and encourage employees or bring in outside sources to continuously generate new ideas.
- Anchor the Changes in Corporate Culture – Embed the change in the company’s core values, beliefs and assumptions. Consider the values set forth in the vision when hiring and training new employees so that they internalize the values from the start of their time at the organization and recognize the hard work of the key change makers.
Tools & Templates
Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model is often developed as an action plan and then communicated in presentations, spreadsheets, and other strategic documents.
upBOARD's Online Kotter Change Model Tools & Templates
Unlike most traditional Change Management Model templates in MS Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, upBOARD’s online Kotter 8-Step Change Model collaboration tools allow any team or organization to instantly begin working with our web templates and input forms. Our digital platform goes far beyond other software tools by including progress dashboards, data integration from existing documents or other SaaS software, elegant intuitive designs, and full access on any desktop or mobile device.
Learn more about upBOARD’s portfolio of other change management best practice tools and templates, including:
AIM Accelerated Implementation Methodology, Beckhard & Harris Change Process, Boston Consulting Group Change Delta, Brainstorming, Bridges’ Leading Transition Model, Burning Platform, Case for Change, Change Fatigue, Change Management Curve, Change Management Impact Analysis, Change Management Maturity Model, Change Management Levers, Change Management Plan, Change Management Roadmap, Change Proposal, Change Readiness Assessment, Change Resistance Management Plan, Change Risk Assessment, Change Success Metrics, Communications Planning, Core Values, Deming Change Cycle, EASIER Change Management, Employee Engagement Plan, Feedback Capture Grid, Focus Groups, Geert Hofstede’s 6 Dimensions of Culture, GE Change Acceleration Process, Go-Live Planning, Head, Heart and Hands Model, Kotter’s 8-Step Change Model, Kubler Ross Change Curve, Lewin’s Change Management Model, Maurer’s 3 Levels of Resistance, Nudge Change Model, People Centered Implementation, Performance Support, Process Mapping, Sponsor Roadmap, Stakeholder Analysis, Stakeholder Interviews, Switch Change Framework, User Acceptance Testing, VRIO Framework and What’s In It For Me (WIIFMs).