Blog Post #2: Change Management Processes for Managing Performance Improvement Projects (PM4PIT)

(Fair Lawn, NJ - January 8, 2018) - Since we hope that you and your organization experience Health, Happiness, and improved Performances in the year 2018, we're publishing a series of blogs with excerpts from our latest book until it comes out in May!

Our Chief Operating Officer, Bill Ruggles, is a co-author along with Dr. H. James Harrington.  For those of you who don't know "Jim", click on the link below to learn more about him:

Dr. Harrington's main contribution to this book is Chapter 3 - Project Change Management -- its longest, single chapter.  Here's an excerpt from our manuscript:

When it comes to performance improvement and excellence, many organizations simply “go through the motions” in predictable patterns and routines, including those which directly contribute to what made the organization great in the past. However, what made an organization great in the past may not be the case today, and may not be nearly strong enough amid increasing global competition to sustain stakeholder demands for increasingly stronger profits (private sector) or proceeds (public sector) and performance.

To break dependence on the status quo, successful Project Sponsors and Project Managers highlight the gaps between current and desired performance. These “gaps” are potential “opportunities for improvement” (OFI’s).  Resiliency is further enhanced by creating an appealing vision of the future state, and fostering confidence that a better future state can be achieved. Resiliency starts with a Change Agenda, an Enrollment Plan, and a Change Management Plan, while education and training enhances motivation and capacity for change.

Since change and resistance to that change occur on virtually all new initiatives, including performance improvement projects, we want to provide you with a “road-map” for driving that change comprised of the six (6) iterative processes of the Project Change Management (PChM) knowledge area, which we prefer to call a “Performance Domain”.

As far back as the year 2000, one of the co-authors of this book (Dr. Harrington) co-authored another one that strongly recommended that Change Management be added as the (then) 10th element (Knowledge Area) in PMI's PMBOK® Guide framework  Although the concept of “Change Control” and the use of a “Change Management Plan” are included in the 6th edition of the PMBOK® Guide, Project Change Management is not included as a full-fledged “Knowledge Area” (“Performance Domain”). Instead, the concept of change on projects is through the lens of the traditional framework and is something that impacts the project in a way that needs to be controlled.  For example, it includes:

  • The premise that every project can expect to have “change requests” submitted for which there should be a “Change Requests Log”. (Chapter 1).
  • A “Perform Integrated Change Control” Process: This is a “Monitoring/Controlling” process in the Project Integration Management chapter that focuses on reviewing all change requests; approving changes and managing changes to project deliverables, organizational process assets, project documents, and the Project Management Plan; and, communicating those approve/reject decisions. (Chapter 4)

Yet in the 2000 book mentioned above and in this Chapter, the emphasis is in the OPPOSITE direction: how the project impacts the organization (the Requesting or Receiving Organization).  For example, we believe that the current version of the PMBOK® Guide doesn’t go far enough in emphasizing the following:

  • The premise that “Projects drive change”, including both “political” and “economic” changes, and that the Project Manager should consider herself/himself as a “change agent”. (Chapter 3)

As a result, we have added PChM to our contemporary model and are presenting it with its six (6) processes in this chapter.  (See Figures 3.3 and 3.4 below.)


Figure 3.3:  The 6 Processes in Project Change Management

Figure 3.4:  The Project Change Management Processes + Their Stages

In this chapter, we help you become prepared for and to overcome the resistance to change caused by your performance improvement project.  It will likely surface throughout your project’s life-cycle as well as throughout the campaign to adopt our contemporary framework for managing performance improvement projects. We will describe each of these six (6) PChM processes and, finally, we’ll close this chapter by relating how its contents apply to one of the Case Studies presented in the Introduction of this book.

Please let us know if you have any questions about Project Change Management in a performance improvement project context by contacting us at or simply leave us a comment below.

1 comment

  • Vivi Ruggles

    Very well written. I like the PChM concept.

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