Ironically, many organisations use a tough economic environment to drive out changes that are often difficult to achieve when things are buoyant. This means that a recession can be one of the best times to embark upon a continuous improvement programme.

During a recession it is inevitable that businesses find it more difficult to make a profit and public sector organisations are asked to deliver more service for less money.

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Every business should go through the process of change management. It is inconceivable for any business to go too long without changing some aspects of the way that it works, simply because things change all around them.

The main things that change fall into one of four categories:

Therefore, change management should be the norm in any business, providing you follow the golden rule of change management, which is:

“Never change for the sake of it; only change for real, operational benefits”

The difference between change management and business transformation is one of degree. If your business needs a major overhaul it will no longer be enough for you to carry out a process of continuous improvement of the type that you can deliver through a change management process. You may need to carry out some substantial “root and branch” changes to your business, even if it causes some short term disruption. Such changes come under the heading of Business Transformation.

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There is a clear link between business efficiency and the level of profit.

The majority of businesses strive valiantly to make progress but very few reach anywhere near their full potential. If your organisation is not firing on all cylinders you will win less business and be less efficient. Therefore profits will be much lower than they should be.

After 2 years of recession, a large number of small businesses identified obstacles to success:

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