Applying Change Management stage 3: Knowledge

In this blog series we will discuss how ADKAR, the model for individual change, can help you to engage others in implementing better change management in your change projects.

In change management the key mechanism for creating Knowledge is training. Unfortunately, many organizations fail to address Awareness and Desire first, and attempt to build buy-in by training people. This approach is ineffective. It can create resistance and make adoption more difficult. Make sure that your team has Awareness of the need for change management and a Desire to engage before initiating training.

Organizations have a long and rich history with delivering training, and many even have an entire department dedicated to training with specialists that focus on education. However, training is not the only way to develop knowledge.

From a change management perspective, there are two distinct types of knowledge. The first is knowledge on how to change (what to do during the transition), and the second is knowledge on how to perform effectively in the future state (knowledge on the ultimate skills and behaviors needed to support the change). In practice, both of these types of knowledge may be integrated and addressed with a single plan, but as you are documenting and developing training requirements it is important to consider both of these aspects.

To build knowledge, individuals must have:

  • Training and education
  • Experience
  • Access to information
  • Mentoring

Tactics for Building Knowledge:

  • Formal training programs
  • Job aides
  • One-on-one coaching
  • User groups and forums
  • Troubleshooting guidance   

Without a holistic model for individual change, like the ADKAR Model, teams can easily fall into the trap of simply sending employees to training when a change is being introduced.  Training is critical, but it must occur in the context of all five milestones of individual change.

ADKAR model of Change Management

Knowledge about how to apply change management

Each of us has been to a training program where we were not sure why we were there in the first place. Without awareness and desire, you cannot effectively create the knowledge that is necessary for a successful change. 

Questions people have around Knowledge include:

”What skills are involved in implementing change management?”
”How do I obtain these skills?”

Key talking points and actions around Knowledge:

  • Teach the team how individuals go through change. To be an effective manager of change, people need to understand how an individual experiences change. Whether it’s your project team, communications staff, human resources personnel, senior leaders and executives, supervisors, or front-line employees—everyone will be better equipped to handle and manage change when you give them a solid understanding of the ADKAR Model.
  • Teach organizational change management principles and processes. The team should be exposed to the change management methodology you will be using for your project. This may be a methodology selected specifically for the project or one developed and deployed across your organization. Organizations are using both internally developed methodologies and externally provided approaches. The key is that your team understands what change management tools they have (communications, sponsorship, coaching, training, etc.) and when and how to use these tools.
  • Get the right training and tools. We offer a variety of training solutions to teach key concepts and give participants experience applying them in real time to actual changes at work. Prosci Change Management Certification Program attendees also receive access to Prosci’s 3-Phase Process, templates, checklists, assessments and guidelines to streamline application. 

Do you have a question or want to discuss more? Contact us!

Teppo Kolehmainen


045 670 0508

Ota yhteyttä