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What Recruiters are looking for in Change Management Professionals

12 December 2018
by Diane Lynch

On Saturday I had the privilege of being part of the panel at the CMI Deep Dive Hiring for Change event. What a day!  I personally had a fabulous day and would like to thank everyone from the Change Community for participating. Here are just a few insights from me in regard to our Profession.   

The change management profession is constantly evolving, and throughout this evolution the change community continues to strive to be seen as a relevant and integral function in any organisation. Within this evolution, the recruitment industry needs to remain up-to-date with the changing resourcing needs of organisations. Change Management must keep up to speed with the New Ways of Working and to do that the whole community needs to carefully steer our discipline through the Digital Age and what lies beyond.  

Recruiters initially look for the technical skills, a mandatory requirement for any change role, such as, the ability to prepare, analyse and execute Business Readiness Assessments and Change Impact Assessments. These skills can be taught, built on and refined over time.  It is essential that change professional possess required technical skills.  

The recruitment industry needs to have specialist expertise in the change industry to remove the wheat from the chaff. Hiring managers and change management candidates often comment on how some recruiters do not understand the essence of Change Management! Change management recruitment needs to be the maven of the industry to help organisations find the best solutions for their resourcing requirements.

We are now focussing more time on assessing the personal attributes and capabilities that enable Change Managers to be successful in a “agile” environment. Organisations are focussing on directing their broader recruitment strategy towards attracting individuals who are flexible, adaptable and truly have a growth mindset. The future is based on constant change and looking at emerging capabilities that never stay static.

There is no single perfect approach to managing change and best practice is not reliant on any single methodology or framework, finally we are thinking more broadly and being more pragmatic. We can now have some freedom and try new things and be more creative. If if doesn’t go perfectly we can tweak it next time and it is ok.  

What do I look for when I am recruiting Change Managers?

The key for me is passion, commitment and ability to truly influence behavioural change, which is not easy. I look for change professionals who have structure and governance but also have flexibility on how they deliver their change program and change activities. For me, a strong change manager is happy to roll their sleeves up and not just do the sexy stuff.  Empathy and understanding are integral, especially when anticipating and assessing the impact of the change program.

As we know, the world is rapidly changing, and we cannot afford to stay still.  So it is important that our change community stays flexible, adaptable and continues to work in more agile ways.

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