THE ADKAR MODEL OF CHANGE
The ADKAR model consists of five sequential steps or actions:
Awareness of the need for change.
Understanding why change is necessary is the first key aspect of successful change. This step explains the reasoning and thought that underlies a required change. Planned communication is essential. When this step is successfully completed the individual (employee) will fully understand why change is necessary.
Desire to participate in and support the change.
In this step the individual is able to reach a point where they make a personal decision to support the change and participate in the change. Naturally a desire to support and be part of the change can only happen after full awareness of the need for change is established. Building desire is partly achieved by addressing incentives for the individual and creating a desire to be a part of the change.
Knowledge on how to change.
The third building block of the model, providing knowledge about the change, can be achieved through normal training and education methods. Other methods of transferring knowledge, such as coaching, forums and mentoring, are equally useful, so don’t limit this process to formal training. Two types of knowledge need to be addressed: knowledge on how to change (what to do during the transition) and knowledge on how to perform once the change is implemented.
Ability to implement required skills and behaviours.
In the ADKAR model Ability is the difference between theory and practice. Once knowledge on how to change is in place (theory) the practice, or actual performance of the individual, needs to be supported. This can take some time and can be achieved through practice, coaching and feedback.
Reinforcement to sustain the change.
This final stage of the model is an essential component in which efforts to sustain the change are emphasised. Ensuring that changes stay in place and that individuals do not revert to old ways can be achieved through positive feedback, rewards, recognition, measuring performance and taking corrective actions.