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61 public and policy support or imperatives. Immediate action is zational changes, increased funding, and changed relationships usually required as a matter of agency credibility, including with external partners (such as law enforcement). Trans- the need to demonstrate visible change and positive outcomes. portation change managers--middle or top management-- Although the response is often limited to a specific activity, can capitalize on the opportunity to institute such important there are a few cases where the response to a particular event changes otherwise not possible. and location has been extended by management to the However, effectively capitalizing on such events requires statewide program level, and often accompanied by changes that the agency have a general strategy in place to seize these in process and institutional arrangements. windows of opportunity to extend and standardize specific program and organizational changes into improved day-to- day SO&M across the agency as a whole. Even in constrained Constraint-Driven Change contexts, it can be extremely valuable to have an improvement In the face of financial or environmental limitations, expen- program "on the shelf" for potential utilization as circum- sive capital projects to increase highway capacity are often stances permit, focusing on the key elements most directly infeasible. SO&M then gains credibility as a relatively inex- implicated by any externally driven change, but also using the pensive way to improve the efficiency of the existing roadway. momentum for more general improvements. This constraint-driven change becomes most apparent where congestion levels are extremely high and capacity improve- Change Management Tactics ment opportunity limitations are openly acknowledged by the transportation agency and accepted by traditional high- The Institutional Capability Maturity Model is not the com- way stakeholders. plete recipe for change management; it provides a framework for determining what needs to be done and the strategies for making institutional changes in a direction that is more sup- Federal Program Incentives Change portive to aggressive congestion management. However, the The use of federal funds has introduced planning and systems strategies themselves must be managed and carried out by architecture requirements and has increasingly focused appropriate staff. This report and the guide are not intended on performance measurement. FHWA has also promoted to provide general change management tactics. There is sub- research, technical exchange, and definitions of current best stantial existing strategic management literature, including practice. FHWA also provides dedicated funding. These such approaches as process engineering, balanced scorecards, actions have increased the visibility and legitimacy of ITS and and Baldrige criteria. Each of these approaches includes a ver- SO&M within transportation policy and encouraged state and sion of the standard, generic steps of change management local involvement. that would be generally applicable to all the components of guidance. The following steps are typical. First is the joint (consensus) identification of the problem/ New Regional Institutional Configuration opportunity/challenge within the change manager's span of A number of substate entities (such as local governments and control or influence to create a sense of urgency. This activity is MPOs) have taken the initiative to establish cooperative clearly relevant to institutional maturity for congestion man- regional efforts for interagency collaboration in improving agement, as evidenced by the shift of the focus of an agency's SO&M. State DOTs have been involved as one of several culture toward operations--based on both the constraints fac- cooperative entities. ing alternative service improvement options and the potential of congestion management opportunities. An understanding of these technical issues is an essential point of departure. Building on Change-Driven Second is the development of a vision and the definition of Momentum the general changes needed, as well as the specifics of the prior- In response to some of the major external events, key external ity components, which may be limited by the change manager's stakeholders, policy makers, and the public have developed span of control (see below). This activity corresponds to adopt- expectations of a specific transportation agency response: to ing the Institutional Capability Maturity Model as the template minimize the potential impact of similar events in the future. for managed change and developing a commitment to use it on It is no surprise, therefore, that major external events have a continuing basis as a component of formal strategic planning. been associated with enabling, if not forcing, change associ- The third step involves creating or building a team of ated with nearly all of the significant progress made by several change agents. The team may be composed of individuals of the state DOTs with more mature programs. The events with specified responsibilities, or it may be a task force. Appli- reduce the barriers to otherwise difficult or expensive organi- cation of the maturity model requires the formation of a team
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62 or unit with the responsibility of applying the method with Fifth is empowering the change agents with the necessary the appropriate units within the agency. support, resources, and authority to make the necessary The next step is sharing the vision and creating buy-in changes. Installing the maturity model as a continuing strate- among the widest possible group of staff that are needed to gic change process requires both a broad, shared understand- understand and support the changes. The Institutional Capa- ing of the objectives and staff capability to manage and bility Maturity Model is applied in a self-evaluation context. monitor the change commitments made for each element in Key management and staff evaluate their current situation the maturity framework. Each of the level transition strategies with regard to the level criteria and develop their own custom- is a task to be managed. tailored version of the next steps and strategies to get there, Finally, it is important to use an incremental approach to thus developing an internalized understanding and buy-in to create visible, early wins to generate momentum and wider the changes required. support. This is focused on results, not activities.