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Telfer School of Management

Leading A Change Initiative

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Research shows that over 75% of organization change initiatives fail to meet their stated objectives. Why? Leaders pay too much attention to project management targets and insufficient attention to the “people side of change” - modelling new behaviors, fostering understanding and commitment among staff and stakeholders, and to helping those affected most learn how to work together in new ways.

This hands-on, experiential program will help change leaders spearhead and advance ongoing change initiatives while reducing the negative impacts on commitment and morale. We will cover step-by-step strategies, tools and techniques for planning, executing and integrating change initiatives acknowledging the unique realities of public sector organizations.

Learn steps you can apply to varying scales of change initiatives and develop a game plan to build support. Sustain momentum for change while applying a disciplined approach to communicate clearly, resource accurately and avoid surprises.


  • How to work with organizational culture and ways to integrate and “normalize” change
  • Approaches to address resistance and support system-wide learning
  • How to apply concepts and frameworks specifically tailored to your change strategy


  • A fully developed change strategy so that it clearly aligns with organizational requirements/strategy
  • Strengthened change leadership skills – including communication skills (e.g. building a shared vision), influencing skills, and stakeholder engagement strategies
  • Your personal “principles” for change
  • An analysis of the impact your initiative will have and which key players and groups will need to be involved

Who should attend

This advanced course is designed for senior-level staff responsible for leading a large-scale or complex change initiative.


Ingrid Richter is an Executive in Residence at the Telfer School of Management, University of Ottawa and Partner, Threshold Associates. Her teaching, action research and consulting work has three major areas of focus: leadership development, facilitating complex, multi-stakeholder change proces...
Lynn Davies is an organizational effectiveness consultant with 40 years’ experience. She is a member of the faculty in the University of Ottawa’s Executive MBA and part of the Telfer Executive Programs Community of Practice, with whom she has been Academic Director for the Quality Improvement and...
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