Accelerating Change in the Public Sector Through a Crisis

Trueman Change methodology, The Trueman Change Way, is proving advantageous as we move from one crisis to another. This is a people-first approach, created from the lessons learnt during the COVID-19 pandemic. These lessons have been implemented into a change accelerator programme, training course, and upcoming book to ensure transformation can continue to happen faster and more compassionately for cost-effective, sustainable outcomes.

Our Research

Back in July 2020, we wrote a white paper called Lessons Learned: Managing Change During the COVID-19 Crisis. What we learnt was that, despite adversity, change during the pandemic was able to happen fast and achieve positive outcomes. During this time, organisations that were often traditionally quite slow at change made it happen literally overnight: the public sector had to pivot and respond extremely quickly. The vulnerable needed protection and new service projects were set up fast, using new innovative approaches through cross-department and partnership collaboration, practices not experienced in decades.   

The common experiences of the early stages of the pandemic, such as shortages in shops, and feelings of anxiety around restrictions and rising death rates, brought out an extremely strong common sense of purpose: to keep people safe. 18 months on and we now understand that because of that common purpose, to keep people safe, the focus of organisations and communities was able to shift quickly onto this one purpose, making it easier to drive change. With proportionate governance and funding at last, action for change succeeded in a faster, kinder, more impactful, clearer, and more cost-effective way. And people were enjoying their jobs! We have learned some valuable lessons from organisations that flourished during the crisis and identified a more effective way of doing change, one that impacts positively on whole communities.

We have also learnt that whilst a shared purpose accelerates change, it is clarity that ensures the messages are understood and people are clear as to what they need to do. The pandemic proved to us that the power of a shared sense of purpose can expedite change, but it cannot do it alone; purpose needs clarity to succeed. Purpose without clarity is a dream, and clarity without purpose is a chore, so it's only when you get both of those components working closely together that the magic happens, and people are really driven to make that change happen at a meaningful level.

Although the pandemic did not affect everyone in the same way, it did affect everyone, and people’s emotions ranged from a little worried to very scared. For the first time, organisational change needed to adopt shorter, sharper, more focused objectives that empowered people and partnerships. A greater level of emotional intelligence was used to enable passion and purpose to drive change. Moving into a post-COVID world, we cannot forget the good change practice that we have witnessed and that we now know effectuates positive sustainable outcomes. People do not want to go back to the old ways where their thoughts and feeling are disregarded, and bureaucracy is so high on the agenda that they cannot achieve what they set out to do in their local government careers: to make a difference to communities.

We have been talking to industry experts and public sector leaders in our Change Chat events over the last year and have pulled apart traditional change methods to establish the right change to achieve sustainable outcomes. Our new methodology highlights six ingredients for successful transformation: purpose, clarity, humanity, collaboration, action, perseverance.

Diagram 1: The Trueman Change Wheel


How many of you can reflect over the last 18-months and relate to the power of these ingredients for meaningful change?

Since April 2020, we have hosted a series of free online Change Chat events, with expert speakers helping the audience to understand how successful change programmes were achieved. Both speakers and guests highlighted the same attributes and how they impacted positively on both the organisation and their community. Change is constant, and now we have experienced effective change we cannot afford to go back to old bureaucratic ways that do not deliver. Think about how far your organisation has come by doing change differently during the pandemic: finding a shared purpose to drive change when it is unrelated to a national crisis will require greater consideration and better understanding of your organisational culture, but it can be achieved. Our people-first methodology achieves this by using a flexible seven-step process that constantly invites leaders to sense check their purpose and clarity – investing time in people, culture and communication to create the shared purpose that catalyses change. It is important to us that change is done properly because we care about the communities we support.

Diagram 2: The Change Accelerator Programme - 7 Step Process 

This new methodology has been incorporated into a selection of Trueman Change’s smart solutions, including our new change accelerator programme, a change readiness report tool, and our specialist services and free insights. Our Managing Director Lucy Trueman’s first book on managing change post-COVID will be published soon. This book describes the Trueman Change Wheel and its six ingredients for positive change.  

So, what next?

If your organisation is floundering and you’re struggling to nail that common sense of purpose to inspire your workforce, then we can help.  If you’re interested in understanding a little more about how you can make change happen better for your organisation, then first download your free Change Readiness Report and sense check how ready for change your organisation is, and then book a call. 

By Lydia Davey | 20th February 2022

Share: LinkedIn Icon Twitter Icon Facebook Icon email Icon

Latest White Paper

Our Managing Director, Lucy Trueman, introduces our latest white paper, 'Lessons From Lockdown: Managing Change During the COVID-19 Crisis'

Change Chats

Change Chat Events

Join our free Change Chat Events discussing hot topics in the public sector

Browse Events

Are you Change Ready?

It only takes 5 minutes to find out if your organisation is ready for change with our free personalised review.

Get Your Free Review
Are you Change Ready?