Discussion: Change Champions

NURS 8502 Discussion: Change Champions

Discussion: Change Champions

Change champions and opinion leaders are fundamental personalities in implementing a change with a certain organization. Change champions include the people who volunteered or were selected by an organization to facilitate a change. The champions play an active role in all the stages of the change management project. These individuals embrace the need for change and are motivated to advocate, facilitate, and support the team tasked with executing the required changes. Change champions can come from any rank within the organization, with research stressing the importance of adopting champions from multiple levels of the organization (“Role of a Champion,” 2022). Thus, it is important to note that change champions should come from the management position and lower ranks of the organization.

Change champions participate in various critical functions, including introducing a change, advocating and promoting the strategies facilitating the change, and implementing policies and measures of the change. They are essential communicators in the whole change process and are always motivated to prevent de-escalations of conflict. They champion problem-solving to eliminate barriers to change and create the required environment to facilitate the change (“Role of a Champion,” 2022). Change champions participate in various processes relating to change, such as promoting the strategies for change, supporting the ideas, and motivating other people involved in the change implementation process.

There are differences between a change champion and an opinion leader. While change champions are people involved in implementing ideas relating to a change, an opinion is an individual with specific mastery skills concerning a specific industry or

Discussion Change Champions
Discussion Change Champions

market and has built trust within the population as a decision-maker or an industry insider (“Opinion Leader,” 2021). These people are influential, meaning that they have built a large audience who believe in their views. For example, in the current project regarding implementing a change that seeks to reduce benzodiazepine (BZD), the champion may include healthcare workers from Umass Memorial Community Health Link in Massachusetts. At the same time, opinion leaders maybe business leaders with vast experience in the healthcare industry or a celebrity like LeBron James and Cristiano Ronaldo, to mention but a few. It, therefore, goes without saying that an opinion leader is a person with a strong social media presence, which is not always the case with change champions. Reputable business leaders and celebrities have the power to influence an audience, and that’s why most companies prefer them to drive their brand forward.

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Resources Needed to Support Proposed Changes

           After meeting with the stakeholders, I found that Umass Memorial Community Health Link in Massachusetts clients are using BZD as a long-term treatment regime for mental disorders. At the same time, CDC recommends short-term use of the drug for less than six months and discontinuing its usage because it leads to long-term effects. Therefore, this project aims to implement a change that promotes the proper use of BZD as a short-term adjunctive medication for psychological conditions. Various resources are required to execute these changes, including healthcare workers, trainers, money, and training materials. An opinion leader may also be fundamental in facilitating the necessary change for several reasons. First, these people have a sense of charisma and the capacity to influence many people. Besides, they are well knowledgeable and respectable, meaning that they can easily convey information regarding the change. A change champion is also a crucial resource in implementing the strategies related to the change, improving communication, and solving problems related to the change.


“Definition and The Role of a Champion”. The Role Of Champions Within The Change Process, 2022,

“What Are Opinion Leaders and Why Is Their Influence Important?”. Indeed Career Guide, 2021,

RE: Discussion – Week 9

Differences between Change Champions and Opinion Leaders

The differences between opinion leaders and change champions get highlighted in their leadership attributes, information sources, and perspective. Change champions operate as respected and influential leaders in their work areas (Foye, 2019). They do not necessarily have to work as part of a particular job title or management position but can be in any position. On the other hand, opinion leaders exert significant influence in their industry and can shift the opinions of associated individuals. From a historical perspective, opinion leaders were noted as decision-makers or industry insiders. They have equally attained considerable authority in a given industry or market. In the e-commerce, business, and production industries, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Ratan Tata represent key opinion leaders.

Another difference between the discussed leaders is in leadership traits. Change champions, for example, have robust management skills, take managed risks, have solid networking ability, and excellent problem-solving skills (Foye, 2019). They likewise portray emotional management for others and themselves. Influential in people engagement, and find it comfortable to guide on new ideas. Contrariwise, champion leaders can digest, simplify, and communicate information excellently to their target audience. Also, champion leaders are more internal, whereas champion leaders function more externally on a wider scope. For the outpatient mental health institution, the effective engagement of champion leaders can change ineffective communication.

Role of Human Resources in Influencing Practice Change

Human resources can help ensure practice change towards effective communication by empowering leaders. Effective methods to support proposed practice change consist of team mentoring, training, and coaching. These directive techniques guide the outpatient mental health institution to identify leaders that hold potential. For instance, potential leaders can get spotted by the different in-house psychiatrists and administration personnel. Such leaders provide sustainability in implementing clinical practice especially with the help of evidence-based practice. EBP in communication should become the basis for human resources in offering support.

Human resources should offer leadership development and training on communication etiquette, especially in administration settings (Baldwin & Poje, 2020). Leaders perform essential roles of empowering and encouraging their teams. When leaders take charge, they grow better and motivate change in their subordinates or other staff members. In this situation, empowered leaders concerning improved communication will positively influence overall institutional attitudes. Also, communication competencies among champion leaders in the outpatient center. The development process should start from top management down to other departments.

Human resources should also suggest appropriate mentoring or course opportunities to boost communication competencies. These opportunities will progressively cause practice change that benefits the institution and the careers of the practitioners. HR should ensure an employee-centric tactic gets applied in the expected practice change (Baldwin & Poje, 2020). An employee-centric method pushes champion leaders to grow more effective in leadership. Growth areas that will boost effective communication are the establishment of appropriate wording and documentation. For example, communication errors made during either documentation, official, and ineffective communication can get minimized. Subsequently, improved areas will get notices on interpersonal skills (Baldwin & Poje, 2020). In a mental health setting, interpersonal skills will improve inter-departmental workflow and performance reviews.


Baldwin, I., & Poje, A. B. (2020). Rural faith community leaders and mental health center staff: Identifying opportunities for communication and cooperation. Journal of Rural Mental Health44(1), 16-25.

Foye, U. (2019). Nursing leaders should try to champion holistic care. Nursing Management26(6), 13-13.