In Chinese philosophy, yin and yang describe how seemingly opposite or contrary forces may actually be complementary, interconnected, and interdependent. This duality lies at the origins of many branches of classical Chinese science and philosophy, as well as being a primary guideline of traditional Chinese medicine. Yin and yang are complementary forces that interact to form a dynamic system in which the whole is greater than the assembled parts.

We find this same concept of duality when we apply this approach to the world of change. When an organisation introduces a change project or initiative, that change needs to be managed on both the technical and people side.

The technical side ensures that the change is developed, designed and delivered effectively and that appropriate structures, processes and tools are in place.

The people side ensures that the reason behind the change is communicated to all those within the organisation that will be directly impacted and that each employee is supported in making the necessary changes to what and how they perform their roles in order that the change will be embraced, adopted and utilised fully.

Project Management (the technical side) and Change Management (the people side) are the two complementary sides of the change coin that, when integrated from the start of project, increase the likelihood that projects and initiates deliver the intended results and outcomes of the change.

The evidence speaks for itself. Change initiatives with excellent change management are 6 times more likely to meet their intended objectives that those with poor change management, are 5 times more likely to stay on or ahead of schedule and are 2 times more likely to stay on or under budget.

Whatever change you are introducing to your organisation, the introduction of change management, working closely with and complementing the capability of project management is one clear way of taking away the risk of failure and ensuring that the change is not just accomplished in the short term but also sustained in the medium to longer term.

To find out more about how the yin and yang of change can help you to accomplish your change objectives visit our website at

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