Make your project work by getting buy-in from the top

For any change management project to succeed, it has to have buy-in and support from the top — and from the outset.

Even if you’re a small organisation, start out your project by getting buy-in from the people who control the purse strings and are responsible for organisational success. The faster and more effectively you do this, the faster you’ll see results.

To back up this essential step, come armed with a compelling business case. Being able to quickly prove to your leaders how big a difference the change project will make to the organisation’s bottom line is crucial. It will help to convince these core people to commit to providing budget, people resources, and visible support.

As Fiona Cameron, from Creative New Zealand, says in Rewrite, having buy-in from the agency’s Chief Executive, Stephen Wainwright, at the beginning of their plain English project was hugely powerful.

As part of his commitment to the project, Stephen also attended every training activity, and dropped in to other sessions to talk to staff about the wider context of the project.

‘He really waved the flag for us,’ said Fiona. ‘He kept its profile high throughout.’

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