Tag Archives: management


Kotter’s 8-step process for leading change is one of the most widely accepted change management frameworks used by organizations and consultants worldwide to help ensure change initiatives are successful. When undertaking a change management consulting project, closely following Kotter’s 8 steps can help smooth the process and increase the chances of achieving the desired outcomes.

The first step in Kotter’s model is to establish a sense of urgency. At the start of the project, the change management consultant would work with senior leadership to assess why change is needed and help create a compelling case for action. Diagnosing the need for change based on market factors, competitive threats, productivity issues or other challenges facing the organization helps convince stakeholders change is imperative. The consultant would work with leaders to communicate this urgency through meetings, presentations and other forums to gain buy-in.

Step two involves creating a guiding coalition. The consultant facilitates formation of a high-powered, cross-functional team consisting of influential leaders, managers and change agents whose help is needed to drive the change. Their positional power and combined expertise helps provide change momentum. Coalition members get fully engaged by understanding the opportunity for their business areas and being involved in strategic planning.

In step three, the consultant helps the coalition develop and communicate a powerful vision for change. An inspiring new vision is crafted that offers a clear picture of what the future could look like after successful transformation. This vision aims to simplify the complex change process and direct the efforts of people in a unified way. Communication tools such as memos, speeches, discussion guides and websites ensure the vision is repeatedly shared across divisions and levels.

Forming strategic initiatives to achieve the vision is step four. Based on assessments, the consultant works with the coalition to identify essential projects and tasks needed to bring the transformation to life. These initiate platforms include new processes, technologies, products, services, capabilities or organizational forms that are tangible representations of achieving the vision. Clear milestones, timelines and deliverables are defined to build momentum.

Step five involves enabling action by removing barriers and empowering others to act on the initiatives. The consultant helps empower broad-based action by assessing perceived obstacles to change, obtaining resources and ensure training, systems and structures are in place. Policies are adjusted, direct reports are enabled with new skills and tools, and new performance management and reward systems recognize successes.

Generating short-term wins is step six. After initial thrusts, the consultant works with leaders to recognize and reward achievements that demonstrate visible progress. Highlighting success stories that resulted from early initiatives helps build confidence and momentum for further change, while motivating continued efforts needed to consolidate gains and propel additional progress.

Consolidating improvements and sustaining acceleration is step seven. As deeper changes take root, formal plans with goals and milestones guide ongoing efforts to ensure initiatives become standard practice. New approaches are continuously developed, leaders are coach to increase progress and hold the line against complacency. The consultant helps assess what’s working well and where more work is needed.

Institutionalizing new approaches is the final step eight. The transformation is complete when behaviors, systems and structures fully support the new state as the ‘new normal’. With the consultant’s guidance, leadership focuses on anchoring cultural changes through succession planning, performance evaluations, job descriptions and retirements to cement the transformation. Feedback from staff is gathered to understand what continues to work and where small adaptations are still warranted to sustain momentum.

The 8 step model guides change management efforts from start to finish over time. As a consultant, working closely with leadership using Kotter’s framework helps overcome barriers, move initiatives ahead and drive increasing buy-in. Continually monitoring each step ensures activities remain aligned and pace of progress is kept up. Completing all phases leads to a higher potential for achieving desired business outcomes. Consultants provide objective facilitation to help leaders make well-informed decisions and skillfully manage people side of change for sustainable success.

In conclusion, Kotter’s 8 step change management model offers a proven approach for consultants to structure engagement, guide planning and ensure activities are implemented to realize goals. By keeping leadership accountable to achieve defined outcomes at each stage, likelihood of overcoming resistance increases. And change becomes embedded rather than a one-time event. Combined with assessment-driven recommendations, facilitation of key stakeholder workshops and status reporting, consultants help organizations transform in a way that lasts.


One of the most widely utilized pain management strategies in pediatric emergency care is pharmacological interventions using analgesic medications. Some common analgesic medications that are used include acetaminophen, ibuprofen, and in more severe cases of pain, low doses of opioid medications such as morphine or hydromorphone may be administered. The choice of analgesic depends on the nature and severity of the child’s pain as well as other factors like previous medication use or allergies. Medications are usually administered orally, rectally, or intravenously depending on the child’s age, distress level, and ability to swallow. For younger children or those with severe pain, combining acetaminophen or ibuprofen with a short-acting opioid is frequently done to achieve optimal pain relief. Close monitoring of medication effects and side effects is important when using analgesics in children.

In addition to pharmacological interventions, non-pharmacological pain management strategies are often implemented concurrently in the pediatric ED. Some examples include distraction techniques, positioning and massage therapies, relaxation and guided imagery. Distraction has been shown to be particularly effective in younger children and involves engaging them in an alternate task that redirects their focus away from the painful procedure or experience. Examples of distractions used include movies, music, toys, smartphones or tablets with engaging games/videos. Positioning therapies involve placing children in comfortable positions that can help alleviate certain types of pain. Examples include elevating an injured limb or applying gentle pressure to sore areas. Massage applied to painful sites by parents or caregivers can help relax tense muscles and promote pain relief as well. Guided imagery and relaxation techniques teach children ways to relax their minds and bodies through deep breathing, imagery of peaceful places, or muscle relaxation from head to toe. These techniques empower children to self-manage their pain when used independently or paired with pharmacological interventions.

One of the most innovative pain management strategies that has been adopted among many pediatric EDs is the use of virtual reality (VR) technologies. With VR, children are provided VR headsets through which they can be immersed in an engaging virtual world as a distraction during painful procedures. Studies have shown VR to significantly reduce pain, distress and anxiety compared to standard care distractions alone. VR provides powerful multi-sensory distraction by fully engaging the child’s visual and auditory senses. A wide variety of VR programs have been developed specifically for medical procedures that transport children to fun virtual environments like oceans, space or tropical islands. VR is particularly beneficial for wound care, intravenous insertions, bone reductions, and other sources of significant acute pain. It allows for procedural sedation requirements to potentially be reduced as well.

Another strategy employed is the use of clowns, puppets and child life specialists in the pediatric ED. These techniques involve trained professionals using entertaining distraction, guided imagery and toys/puppets to help normalize the hospital environment, reduce fear and cope with pain and stressors. Child life specialists are mental health experts adept at assessing a child’s developmental needs and providing tailored interventions to optimize their experience. They educate children on what to expect, give them a sense of control and prepare them cognitively and emotionally for painful procedures. Studies have shown interactions with child life specialists can result in less distress before, during and after medical experiences.

Non-pharmacological comfort measures like swaddling, skin-to-skin contact (“kangaroo care”), rocking and singing have been adopted as helpful adjuncts to pain management in infants and young toddlers who cannot yet comprehend more complex distractions. These child-centered, relationship-focused techniques capitalize on a baby’s preferences for human contact, motion and auditory stimuli to help relax them and provide a sense of security during painful procedures.

Pediatric emergency departments have implemented numerous multi-modal pain management strategies combining pharmacological therapies, personalized non-pharmacological distractions, emotional preparation techniques, and comfort measures tailored for developmental needs. This comprehensive, evidence-based approach aims to minimize pain, distress and trauma for pediatric patients during emergency care through both child-centered and relationship-focused interventions.


Effective time management is an essential life skill that takes practice to develop. As students juggle homework, extracurricular activities, social lives and other responsibilities, teaching them strategies for prioritizing tasks and making the most of their time is crucial for academic success and reducing stress levels. Using homework as an opportunity to reinforce time management can help pupils establish habits that will serve them well into adulthood.

One approach is assigning time management as a homework topic. Students could research and write a report on different time management methods, such as prioritizing with lists, breaking large projects into smaller steps, avoiding procrastination, or managing distractions. This introduces various strategies while also addressing a homework assignment. Educators could also guide students through an interactive lesson on time management, then assign related practice by having students schedule a sample week of activities.

When assigning other homework, teachers should provide clear expectations on task prioritization and deadlines. Communicating the value of each assignment helps students allocate appropriate time. Educators could also suggest time frames for completion to establish routines. For example, advising students to dedicate 60 minutes per night, Monday through Thursday to homework establishes a regular study period. Tracking homework time also cultivates awareness of procrastination habits. Students could record the start/end time and estimated versus actual duration of assignments.

Breaking large, multi-step assignments into stages with deadlines spreading them over several days further supports time management skills. When students receive long-term projects, encourage scheduling work periods throughout the allotted timeframe rather than last-minute cramming. Collaboration is another strategy to teach – students learn to find the most effective way to divide project tasks and responsibilities based on one another’s strengths and availability. Setting mini-deadlines as benchmarks, rather than one looming due date, helps avoid procrastination issues.

Educators should also lead by example, such as demonstrating effective preparation. Explaining homework plans in advance illustrates the value of scheduling study periods proactively rather than scrambling to complete tasks. When possible, allow students flexible due dates to encourage self-management. They can learn personal preferences when prioritizing assignments and balancing various commitments. Praise and positive reinforcement help motivate regular homework routines and time management efforts.

Calendaring family commitments and extracurricular activities also facilitates student scheduling. Posting weekly schedules allows pupils to clearly see time commitments outside their control. Communicating scheduling conflicts respectfully and finding reasonable compromises when deadlines are tight also models considerate time management. Regular check-ins regarding task progress and time spent helps address procrastination early on through accountability and guidance adjusting routines as needed.

Teachers play an instrumental role establishing a growth mindset by acknowledging time management is a skill requiring monitoring and adjustment over time. Mistakes present learning opportunities to cultivate better routines moving forward. Using homework as a platform to thoughtfully instill these skills sets students up for organizational success now and in future educational and career pursuits that will surely involve myriad demands on their time. A little guidance goes a long way in helping students develop and commit to strategies to feel in control of their schedules and commitments.


Competency-based performance management systems focus on identifying, measuring and developing the competencies or behaviours that are required for success within an organization. It moves away from more traditional performance appraisals that often focus too much on goals, tasks and results.

A large professional services firm implemented a comprehensive competency-based performance management system across its entire global organization with over 50,000 employees. The key steps they took included:

Competency Framework Development: First, the company established a competency framework that clearly defined the competencies needed at different levels and roles within the organization. They conducted extensive research to identify core competencies that delivered outstanding performance. The framework included both technical/professional competencies as well as leadership and behavioural competencies.

Some examples of competencies included in the framework were things like client service orientation, quality focus, teamwork, leadership, strategic thinking, driving results, developing others. The framework established benchmark levels for each competency on a 5-point scale. This allowed them to assess performance in a consistent manner globally.

Training on Competency Framework: Once the competency framework was established, the company delivered training programs to all people managers worldwide on how to effectively utilize the framework. The training focused on how to identify competency strengths and developmental needs, set competency-based performance objectives, and conduct effective competency-focused performance reviews and development conversations.

Approximately 50,000 people managers received both virtual and in-person training over 18 months to ensure consistent adoption and understanding of the new performance management approach. Additional resources including guides, tools and examples were also made available online.

Integrating Competencies in Performance Reviews: At performance review time (semi-annually), managers were required to assess direct report’s performance against each competency using the five-point benchmark scale. Examples and behavioural statements were provided to help guide assessment and calibration of ratings. Developmental feedback also focused on addressing any competency gaps.

In addition, 2-3 competency-based development goals were set for the next review period. Progress on development goals was also reviewed in subsequent performance discussions. The competency assessments along with review discussions were documented electronically for record-keeping and input into talent processes.

Using Competencies for Succession & Development: Another key part of the system was leveraging the competency data and developmental goals to power talent management and succession planning processes. High potential employees with desired competency profiles could be readily identified for growth opportunities. Individualized development planning also targeted building the specific competencies required for upward progression.

Learning programs both online and in-person mapped back to the competency framework to allow employees to independently strengthen areas of development. Coaching and mentoring programs also utilized competency data to focus development guidance. Succession planning and resourcing decisions critically depended on having rich competency data on the organization’s diverse talent pool.

Continuous Improvement: The effectiveness of the competency management system was regularly measured through annual employee opinion surveys, manager/employee focus groups, and tracking metrics such as diversity in succession plans, reductions in turnover risks, improved performance levels over time. Necessary refinements to the competency framework, performance review process, or enabling talent systems were made on an ongoing basis to maximize results and continually enhance the maturity of the competency-based approach.

This large-scale implementation example highlights key elements of a robust competency-based performance management system including establishment of a competency framework, training managers, integrating competencies into goal-setting and reviews, leveraging competency data to inform talent processes, and ensuring continuous improvement. When done comprehensively, it can deliver business impact through enhanced employee performance and development, succession management, and retention of top talent.


Social entrepreneurship capstone projects provide business management students with an invaluable opportunity to develop a wide range of important skills that are highly sought after by potential employers. By undertaking such a project, students gain real-world experience of starting up and leading their own social venture. This allows them to cultivate skills that cannot be learned as effectively inside the classroom.

One of the core skills developed through a social entrepreneurship capstone is leadership. To successfully establish and run their venture, students must lead a team and provide direction. This requires strong communication, delegation, collaboration, and ability to motivate others. Whether managing volunteers or a small staff, students gain experience in people management, resolving conflicts, and ensuring everyone is working productively towards shared goals.

Relatedly, social capstones help nurture management skills. Students learn how to plan projects, allocate resources, design processes, and manage timelines, budgets, and logistics. They must define responsibilities, coordinate tasks across team members, and troubleshoot problems as they arise. Such real-world challenges enhance students’ strategic thinking and ability to manage complexity under pressure.

Another key area of development is around idea generation and innovation. To identify a social problem they want to address and design an innovative solution requires creativity, research skills, and a solution-focused mindset. Students must evaluate market viability and sustainability of their venture concept. They also gain experience in customer and stakeholder engagement to refine their ideas based on feedback.

Fundraising represents an area where capstones foster valuable competencies. To secure necessary startup funding and resources, students improve their financial management, budgeting, and pitching skills. They learn how to craft compelling cases for support, network effectively, and negotiate with potential donors and investors. Such fundraising forces students to clearly articulate their venture vision and value proposition.

Perhaps most significantly, social venture projects allow students to hone entrepreneurial abilities and mindsets. Through developing a new organization from the ground up, they gain exposure to uncertainties and ability to adapt rapidly changing conditions. Students cultivate resilience, persistence to overcome obstacles, and tolerance for risk and ambiguity. They also strengthen skills in leveraging available resources, exploring new opportunities, and thinking outside the box to address problems creatively.

Capstones promote self-awareness as students are given autonomy to apply classroom learnings independently. They gain confidence through taking ownership and tackling open-ended challenges without direct supervision or guidelines. Managing an end-to-end project builds students’ capacity for self-motivation, organization, time management under competing priorities, and ability to evaluate outcomes of their own decisions.

On the interpersonal front, social ventures require navigating complex stakeholder relationships and community networks. Students enhance their cultural awareness, empathy, persuasion abilities, and capacity for building strategic partnerships. They also strengthen advocacy and client relationship management skills through engagement with beneficiaries and target demographics.

In evaluating their work at the end, students develop critical thinking by self-assessing challenges, outcomes, learning points and areas for future growth. They apply analytical and problem-solving lenses to reflect on perspectives of others as well. A social entrepreneurship capstone provides rich and transformative experience through which business management students can cultivate vital leadership, managerial, entrepreneurial and soft skills prized by potential employers in today’s workforce.

By starting up and leading their own social venture from ideation to implementation, students gain unmatched confidence and real-world application of their classroom learnings. Rather than just checking boxes, such a capstone ensures they develop a holistic skillset covering initiative-taking, problem-solving, collaboration, adaptability, planning and community orientation – all under time constraints. This prepares them exceedingly well for future careers in business, management or social impact domains. A capstone project therefore represents an invaluable learning experience that allows students to stand out as future industry leaders.