Implementing Change in 2018? Remember the 4 I’s©

January 1, 2018

Are you planning to improve your business in 2018? Whether you are installing a new ERP system, optimizing your supply chain, or improving your business processes, you are implementing significant change. Change is never easy. It is always difficult to get people to accept and embrace a new way of doing things. To get that acceptance, you need to remember the 4 I’s©: Inform, Instruct, Invest, and Inspire. You will greatly increase your chances for success in 2018 if your plans include all these critical change management elements.

Inform – Tell the affected people what is changing and why. Employees need to be aware of and aligned with the plans and goals of your change project. This involves communicating those plans and goals, and putting the policies and procedures in place to institutionalize the change.

Instruct – Ensure people have the competency to succeed after the change. People affected by the change need to have the capability to execute their jobs using the new system, or process . You must train people in the new tasks, tools and technology. Ensuring competency includes initial training and a plan for sustaining reinforcement.

Invest – Provide tools, methods, and opportunity. Adequate resources must be available and obstacles to performance must be removed. Resources can be things like tools, forms, and processes. Obstacles to performance can be time required to execute new tasks, or existing policies, procedures and culture.

Inspire – Create incentives, strive for positive reinforcement. Consequences have to be put in place to create an environment where people have incentives to deliver a high level of results. You must determine how to measure desired results, and design positive reinforcement for those results.

The 4 I’s© are a quick and easy mnemonic to guide you through implementing change in your organization. Successful change requires a good project plan. A good project plan must include tasks to Inform, Instruct, Invest, and Inspire.


Need help planning and implementing change in 2018? The ACA Group can help. Check us out at Email us at or call 626.390.6935.

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Doug Howardell is a consultant who specializes in helping clients improve their business practices and processes. During the past twenty-five years, he has designed new processes and tools, selected and implemented new business systems, and managed business process improvement projects. Contact Doug at

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