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Thursday 17 September 2015 | 17.00 - 18.00


Change Management and Narrative Paradigm: How to Use Stories for Giving Sense to the Role Changes

A change management intervention can be seen as an execution process, a technical procedure or even a software, but at its essence is always an adventure: the timeless story of persons fighting, learning and changing behaviors in order to cope with their time challenges. When a computer automatically runs the trains, how do you turn a Milan subway driver in a proactive security expert?

The success of a Change Management plan is measured, at the end, by its capacity to modify on a permanent basis the behaviors, and therefore the professional identity, of people playing operational roles. Narration – that is the ability to elaborate, communicate and share stories – is the instrument we always use for giving sense to our experience and creating our identity: inside a community we exchange stories and we create a social “plausible reality” able to drive our motivation and to define acceptable or harmful behaviors. Is not easy to translate inside the organizations the process we apply in a natural way in our personal life: specific context conditions, unusual competencies and great creativity are prerequisite for success.

We will look into this subject starting from some example of applying narrative methodologies to the process of operational roles modification in a difficult (and very European…) context: public companies, low change maturity, strongly unionized.

The experience and the surveys of Assochange, the Italian Association of Change Management, will help us to maintain a continuous grip on reality.

Learning Objectives

  • How to consider change as a sensemaking process.
  • How to turn change objectives in “plausible stories” and how to use them.
  • How to develop “conversations” based on shared stories (mutual adjustment).


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