Convincing Management on the Value of Change Management

March 29th, 2014 | Posted by Don Boylan in Change Management

Our company is currently implementing ITIL and I was appointed to create a handbook of the Change Management Process. The handbook draft has been finalized and presented to the head of Operations. We had a consultant that helped us reviewed the draft and he gave clarification to proceed with implementation.
The problem came with the head of Operations. He was hesitated and wanted to be sure the process will work. Although we (me and the consultant) tried to convince him that Change Management is not a big deal and more a matter of administration work, he insisted to have a trial to some cases.
We went through several cases and have made 4 CAB Meetings and so far, have approved 7 RFCs, 3 of which have been reviewed on the PIR.
He still hesitate and wanted to have more evidence.
So I’m in a position of conducting a “shadow” CAB Meeting with CAB members only volunteer and rely on the willingness of Change Requestors to use the process, and I think this is not right.

Did anyone had the same problem? Would you like to share how to overcome it?


I’m not exactly sure what you mean by “shadow” CAB meeting.

What I might suggest to overcome your head of Operations reluctance is to perform a round table exercise. This would consist of you setting up a pre-defined situation where you control the outcome.

There was a series on American PBS called “Ethics In America” that was the best example of round table exercises I have seen. It would take a pre-defined situation and present it to the experts in the fields of finance, government, military, philosophy, etc. and see how it played out. The beauty of it was that it was all controlled by a person who guided the discussion in such a way that all those involved had to really examine the moral dilemmas of the situation.

I wouldn’t suggest putting such a dramatic show on in your workplace, but something along the same lines. If your head of Operations needs proof, set up a theoretical situation where Change Management would have benefited and then role play the situation.

Talk with the people who would be involved in the CAB and give them all specific Changes that are going to collide with disastrous results. They would all need to be coached ahead of time with their Changes (server team planning on upgrading hardware, messaging planning on version upgrade, OS with patches, etc). Involve the Business with their plans for process changes or critical business processes. Involve the finance group with times that would severely affect their finance cycle. Let none of them know of the other groups’ plans.

Get them all in a conference room and set up the scenario where no Change Management is in place and lead them into a train wreck.

Then give them a way out. Give them the chance to talk with each other and determine how they can all achieve their desired results through regular CAB meetings.

Although the staging of this event requires extreme planning and preparation, it would achieve the desired result.

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