This article has triggered lots of ideas for me about how we listen to the impacts of change. It is hard to capture the true level of support for change or track how much people are really changing their ways of working from surveys rating their views from 1 to 5. We need to capture thoughts, feelings and ideas but this gives us large amounts of information to work through.
AI tools are great for sifting through this and finding key themes within only a few seconds. A great example of how AI can improve our stakeholder engagement during change.
Of course, identifying key words and themes from large volumes of data is only one element of the work. We need change experts to understand the ramifications of what we are being told. For example, if you are seeing a lot of feedback which is still questioning why the change is needed, then your change experts will need to devise an engagement strategy that addresses this early stage resistance.
If you are seeing themes which complain that the changes have made work more difficult, that service to customers has declined because of lack of functionality etc then you need your change experts to bring together those in the project teams to identify what if anything can be done to enhance functionality and make the change more workable.
On the positive side, if the AI tools identify examples of more benefits of the change, then your change experts can use that to encourage more staff to adopt the new ways of working.
AI is a tool, but it must be used in conjunction with change expertise. Otherwise we might know more but we do not have the ability to use this information in a way that increases support, participation and normalisation of the changes we are making.