Kristen Baldwin Ballinger, Chief People Officer at Selecta Biosciences, joined Steve Safier and Jane Gios’s Integrated Talent Management Class for a highly informative guest lecture regarding Change Management.
As an HR Leader and management consultant, Kristen has handled numerous projects involving change management, and her knowledge of the practice runs deep. Key insights she provided during her presentation included, “Businesses have to constantly evolve to remain relevant, they are in constant change, and HR plays a critical role in that and in making sure that the employees are prepared. As an HR professional, you need to minimize disruption to the business as much as possible.” When asked by Dr. Safier about how she helps employees accept change, Kristen responded, “If people aren't on board and aligned with the change there can be a lot of pushback. HR should consider the unique impacts to the various stakeholder groups and manage mitigations accordingly. Obtaining stakeholder buy-in is critical. Listening and providing forums for two-way feedback is important in achieving that buy-in."
Kristen commented on a particular change project in which the organization’s growth trajectory was -4 percent, and after significant strategy and organization change coupled with concerted change management efforts, the company’s growth increased to +1 percent after only one year. She added, “Other key factors that aid successful change management process include accountability, transparent communication, and involving and listening to employees and key stakeholders.” When asked about career advice, Kristen emphasized networking is key, and she advised students to keep a growth mindset and never stop learning in order to stay relevant in their field.
Thank you, Kristen, for an informative evening!