Reviewing this analysis of LinkedIn job data LinkedIn – Future of Skills has clarified the importance of being specific when outlining your skills. I have formed this view as I reviewed and compared the following roles, all of which have a part to play in effective change management:
Change management has fallen out of favour from 2015, and is now replaced by more specific terms including business process mapping; business process analysis; Agile methodologies.
HR Business Partner
Change management is no longer in the top skills, replaced by culture change and HR transformation.
Change management has fallen in importance, replaced by more specific skills including strategic business change and stakeholder engagement.
Reviewing all the data, I can also see that there is an expansion from management activities (doing things in the right way) to include leadership activities (doing the right things). This appears to be across all the roles.
My reasoning for this is that in a world where we expect employees to not only do their jobs but also collaborate in projects and change initiatives that improve how they work, we should include those skills needed for looking at the wider context and challenging our current assumptions.
Whenever I am constructing a job role, this visual from the great Esther Cameron and Mike Green is one of my go-to ideas:
I work across from left to right, making sure that all the core responsibilities of the role are captured via the list on the left. After that I move into the centre of this Venn diagram, where a lot of the elements of the agile concept of collaborative working sits. Finally, even for junior roles, I still consult the right of the diagram to see how we can add more stretch, a strategic, outward focus to the role and encourage people to challenge their current norms.
This approach to identifying skills aligns to what the World Economic Forum predicted for skills development in 2020 when they predicted the increased importance of problem solving and self-management as core skill areas for 2025 and beyond.
My view is that it is not enough to say that you have change management skills. My hypothesis is that this is increasingly seen as generic category which is so wide it is open to many different interpretations and therefore lacks meaning. It should be avoided and replaced by more specific elements of the role.
If you want to explore this subject more, join me on the Change Management Practitioner course where we examine the role of the Change Manager and look at the techniques we use in carrying out this role. This will give you lots of ideas about your specific skills in change management, so you can select those that most closely match your experience and create your most marketable self!