High Speed Change Management

The challenge:
Effect changes quickly and on target.

"That's the way it's always been and that's how it should stay." Many fear change. Yet we live in a world where it's constant. Whether they want to or not, companies must face this fact. The longer changes are delayed, the bigger the problems become.

Faced with major change plans, managers often drag their feet for some time before getting down to business. Long, drawn-out change processes are also a cause uncertainty and confusion in the company. Operations cannot afford to suffer. Once the decision has been made to implement changes, management needs to craft an appropriate solution. Finally it's up to those responsible to communicate the change plan and implement it in the organization.

The problem is that executives often believe that the implementation will go relatively quickly once the details are hammered out. In so doing, they tend to overlook the real challenge inherent in the change - employee understanding and acceptance.

Such lapses in turn drive the costs of the change through the roof because the time needed is considerably more than planned. In the worst of cases, the entire project may fall flat. The challenge lies not so much in the design of the solution, but much more in its resolute implementation.

With the right total package:
Get to goal quickly and successfully!

Time is one basic criterion for success when it comes to change. Change processes absolutely must get off the ground quickly. At the same time those at the helm need to be aware that it is not as easy as flipping a switch.

Reasoned and effective methods are needed to make the journey to goal quick and successful. CPC has just the right solution. It combines the various tried-and-true elements of success into one total package to accelerate change. The name we selected is an apt one: high speed change management. Here, high speed means employing the suitable methods and measures to:

  • Get the change moving,
  • Implement the change,
  • and permanently anchor the change.

All in a comparatively short time.

1. Get the change moving

The high speed approach assumes that the "critical mass" needed to implement the change must grasp its urgency in the shortest time possible. To get the job done, we rely on CPC solutions like reality training, conference room simulations and business case simulations. In these environments, employees become believers. They experience directly why their company needs to change and where the journey needs to lead. The outcomes:

  • Participants learn how the changes impact them personally and to what degree and specifically how their own behavior needs to change.
  • The scope of change required by the organization as a whole becomes clear.
  • Participants and the organization lay a fool-proof foundation for change.
  • The change concept is modified so it is a perfect fit for the whole organization.

As a result, employees and managers develop a keen desire to change, quickly setting the processes toward that end in motion.

2. Implement the change

Our approach is especially helpful for those who bear the heaviest burden in the change process, the lower-level managers. With the active support of our consultants, the right concepts, and participation of those involved, phases of insecurity are avoided or dramatically shortened. Change, in the end, cannot be shoved down people's throats; even high speed change takes time.

Even more important is that our solutions help identify the 20 percent who effect 80 percent of the change.

3. Permanently anchor the change

Through joint activities and feedback loops, our consultants show participants precisely how far the change project has progressed and what areas still need work. This fosters a positive association with change that ensures its sustainability. Backsliding into old behaviors is avoided.

One powerful emotional experience dramatically boosts the chances for success, which is why we use innovative experiential formats to energize the "critical mass" early on.

Our secret for success:
A holistic view.

  • High speed change management is embedded in our organizational, process, and project management competence, allowing us to initiate change purposefully, logically and relatively quickly.
  • With its innovative and unique methods, CPC allows participants to directly experience change, and hence considerably hasten its progress.
  • We rely on a combination of our many years of change management experience and the right set of tools to achieve the desired results quickly.
  • Our methods ensure clients receive valuable feedback on their plan, allowing them to make the necessary course corrections early and in turn ensure the long-term success of the change project.
  • CPC considers not only the methodology for the change process, but its human side as well. This engenders a higher level of understanding and acceptance in those impacted.
  • We break down barriers by actively attending to every step of the change process; employees avoid backsliding into old behaviors.

An interview with
Michael Kempf, Partner at CPC.

Mr. Kempf, the topic of change management has garnered a lot of attention over the last few years. Where will that journey take companies?

Our goal is to reduce the duration of change projects from the typical one-and-a-half to three years down to six to twelve months. That definitely meets the needs and wants of our clients. Companies want to see measurable results for their efforts in real time.

How can project durations be cut so dramatically?

That's best explained using a typical change project as an example. It usually starts with creating a change concept. That's were the goal of the change is defined, such as improved service orientation. Then the different solution variations and time frames are worked out and the concept submitted to leadership for a decision. If leadership does opt for change, a plan of action is defined and communication initiated very quickly - in our experience, a bit too quickly. The key to swift and lasting change is a mix of methods that is optimized for the target groups. Twenty years of experience has taught us that the following elements are essential: definition of the critical mass required for success, a powerful emotional impetus, intensive collaboration with and support of the lowest levels of management, and ensuring a sense of achievement at an early stage. That's where formats like reality training are so effective.

What happens to participants in these training sessions?

Our reality training format gives them a glimpse into the future. Employees experience at every sensory level that change is feasible and success is realistic. But they also discover, in very practical terms, what they themselves still need to learn and how to grow on an individual level. Employees run through the full change curve in reality training. It's a critical factor in mastering change much more quickly.

How is change ultimately implemented?

Change happens by doing. Our approach takes the change from the concept level to the level of positive personal experience. In specific terms, this means that employees dive headlong into exercising the change behaviors every day, successes are reinforced, and missteps are used as opportunities for learning. We also guide clients in three key areas:

  • Communication: We know from experience that change must first be firmly anchored at the lowest level of management. Our communication plan is therefore directed specifically to reach this target group.
  • Use Cases: Concrete use cases illustrate employee behavior in specific situations, which gives employees points of orientation.
  • Cooperation: Change happens only if everyone pulls together. We try to underscore this through joint team building.

Thank you for the interview.


Portrait Michael Kempf
CPC Unternehmensmanagement AG
Am Flughafen
60549 Frankfurt am Main  


Portrait Sebastian Keim
Senior Manager
CPC Unternehmensmanagement AG
Am Flughafen
60549 Frankfurt am Main  

„High speed change management energizes the critical mass in one fell swoop.“

Michael Kempf, Partner at CPC