Top tips for getting a job in Change Management

I have spent the summer helping people apply for new roles in change management, so I thought I would highlight the 6 most common areas of improvement that you make to your CV and LinkedIn profile:

Be clear about your achievements

Change is difficult to accomplish because it relies on the willingness of all those impacted to decide to work in a new way. Make it clear that you have achieved this outcome, specifying the stakeholder groups that have started working in new ways as a result of your influencing, motivating and persuasion skills.

Claim the benefits

Don’t just talk about what has changed, make it clear that real, measurable benefits have been realised for the business as a result what you have achieved. If your change has simplified processes, then explain how this has saved time and increased the productivity of the staff involved. If your change has put everyone onto a common platform, explain how access to a single version of the truth has reduced data management costs, re-keying costs and increased data security.

Market yourself at the right level

There is a difference between change and transformation. Have you been leading an individual change initiative with hands on day to day management of all the activities needed to move from idea to new way of working? Or have you been overseeing a large-scale transformation where your responsibilities have been for creating a transformation strategy, defining each of the initiatives needed to create the transformation and the high-level stakeholder engagement needed to create effective sponsors at all levels of your organisation.

Establish yourself as an expert

Make it clear that you are a trusted resource has successfully managed changed in a similar situation to the one being advertised. For example, same system, same outcomes, same stakeholder groups, same industry, so you will be a subject matter expert that they can rely upon. Use the language from the job descriptions you are applying for to create this close match between what is being asked for and what you are explaining you have done before. Find jobs that you think are a close match to your previous roles, print out several of them and highlight common terms they are all using to describe what they want, and use these terms in your profile.

Make it clear that you can hit the ground running

Describe the collateral that you know how to create to get things moving from the start. Explain that you have a plan with all the workshops, meetings and ‘show and tells’ already identified. Describe the templates that you have designed for all the critical documentation to keep your change under control: Strategy, Plans – high level and for each wave of change, checklists, quality criteria etc.

Establish yourself as a professional

Make sure your qualifications and your memberships align to your claims of excellence in change management. Make sure you have a qualification in change management (it is great if you have other qualifications, but don’t lose sight of the fact you are applying for change management roles) and make sure you are a member of a relevant professional body – Change Management Institute or Association for Change Management Professionals.

To keep up to date on these and other related issues, sign up for my newsletter which has lots of information about how to manage change initiatives in an Agile world.

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