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4) Underestimating the importance of time

Time allocated to a change programme often links to set points in the financial year, with quarterly targets and a completion date of 31st March. As such the timeline is often set in a linear manner with the biggest change period falling in quarter 3; the busiest time of year for most healthcare organisations.

Change efforts often fail because the time for each stage is planned in a pragmatic way based on target dates and required objectives without enough consideration for the size and impact of the change being implemented. As the timeline clock ticks the pressure to stop asking questions and ‘just do it’ becomes greater. As a result, changes are implemented that are weak and do not sustain beyond the end of the timeline of support and attention.

You know you have this problem when you hear.. “we just need to do what we were asked”

TOP TIP: Plan the time required for your change programme based on key factors such as the number of stakeholders involved, the number of different changes to be introduced, the significant difference expected, any geographical constraints or the need for a shift in culture and don’t be limited to fitting in with the convenience of a calendar year.

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