To answer this question, it should be ascertained what exactly is evidence-based management. It is a framework that organizations are using to correctly measure, manage and improve the value that they get from their products. Evidence-based management focuses on improving the results that the company gets, be it PR, business transactions, or risk management. Companies that use that style of management make decisions based on return on investment (ROI) and value of the deal. They conduct regular inspections in order to mitigate risks and to improve abilities to deliver. At the same time, they are adapting to the changes, based on the results and presented opportunities.
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Evidence-based and Change Managing Methods
Evidence-based management is a method that works with empirical results of company’ deals. It also allows ensuring that the company could change its course when the situation calls for it, enabling successful steps for the change. That, in turn, ties it with change management and the problem of instigating changes in the company. Change management is a method that is used to ensure that changes are thorough, fully implemented and wholly integrated into the company framework, while making sure that it will be beneficial in the long turn (Hayes, 2018).
Therefore, change management is a broad field encompassing many methods of management and transforming from company to company (Hayes, 2018). The evidence-based method is a way to scientifically approach these changes to ascertain which elements are more beneficial to the company and how changes affect those benefits (F. Luthans, B. Luthans, & K. Luthans, 2015). Moreover, there are different theories concerning how the obtained data should be utilized and what are the main aspects of the results. Analytics draws on many scientific fields, from behavioral science and psychology to systems thinking and engineering to get their answers (F. Luthans, B. Luthans, & K. Luthans, 2015).
That leads to the underlining principle of the evidence-based practices in the change management – changes impact the whole system and the people included in it and therefore should be studied in conjunction (F. Luthans, B. Luthans, & K. Luthans, 2015).
To manage change effectively, it is necessary to discover the broader impacts of the planned changes. As it is vital to consider tangible impacts of changes, it is even more so to consider the personal impact that they can cause on the personnel, their routine, and workload. As morale is an integral part of the workflow, it should be taken into account. The Change Curve is a model generally used to describe the personal and organizational changes in detail.
As for now, it is hard to ascertain whether the evidence-based approach to the change management works or not, since its results are not precisely defined and change management often does not have explicit goals. However, there are reviews of change management research regarding the types of organizational change interventions, including evidence-based, that provide some clear conclusions (as cited in F. Luthans, B. Luthans, & K. Luthans, 2015, p. 254).
It was found that while there is quite an amount of evidence regarding change management and evidence-based practices in it, there is almost no quality research on that topic (as cited in F. Luthans, B. Luthans, & K. Luthans, 2015, p. 254). That means that there is not enough data to assume that evidence-based methods work, even though existing data points to that conclusion, but it cannot be confidently stated.
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Still, that does not mean that usage of evidence-based methods should be stopped as ineffective since it is a simple issue of not having enough data for a solid theory, not a disproval of a hypothesis. That means that researchers and analysts should conduct more studies on that topic, questioning established change management models, comparing them to the evidence-based ones. In time, this will provide more tangible data about the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of evidence-based management approach to the change.
Hayes, J. (2018). The theory and practice of change management. London, UK: Palgrave.
Luthans, F., Luthans, B. C., & Luthans, K. W. (2015). Organizational behavior: An evidence-based approach (13th ed.). Charlotte, NC: IAP.