The Change Timeline

The Past/Present/Future model of Change Management

I believe that, for any change to be successful, people must take account of the situational and environmental past, present, and future, to the extent that they are relevant to each individual employee, whole teams, and the organization.

By taking both the situational and the environmental past, present, and future as separate elements that need to be addressed within the process we can, more effectively, identify the psychological impacts and design interventions that focus on employee needs.

The environmental issues could include the wider business market-place, socio-economic influences, changes in government policy/legislation, etc. In contrast, the situational elements are more likely to be concerned with the processes operated by the employee, their perception of the team, and their role within the organization.

Change Timeline Diagram

This requires that change agents consider the relationship between the past, present, and future, and address all three as part of the integrated change management process. This is depicted above as the ‘change time framework’, which can be used as an over-arching or meta-model to supplement their existing change management models by introducing the time dimension.

The following sections consider each time period in turn, highlighting the implications for both individuals and change agents.


The change time framework