9.6.1 What is Change Management?

Changes are everywhere around us and we cannot avoid them. They can be in the external environment or they can be internal. Most of them are small and we do not notice them. Some changes, however, have significant effect on people´s lives and they can be managed. That is why, when it comes to talking about change, experts usually cite Lewis Carroll´s "Alice in Wonderland":

"Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"
"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to", said the Cat.
"I don´t much care where", said Alice.
"Then it doesn´t matter which way you go", said the Cat.

Change management is a process in which controlled changes are carried out in a system according to established frameworks or models.

Changes can be implemented in systems, policies, organizational schemes, human behaviour and activities. Considering market dynamics and rapid technology developments, change management forces its way into strategic management. Recent economic issues also demonstrate the need for change management. In contrast to project management dealing with the "technical" and "business" side of change, change management deals with the human element.