Change is inevitable in life and in business, but Julie Heinz at ExxonMobil says it doesn’t have to be a confusing or painful process. As ExxonMobil’s corporate change management office manager, Heinz guides employees through the rigors of change by providing understanding and support in a manner that will give it “stickability.”
Her Baton Rouge office, created in 2021, seeks to deliver optimal value during the implementation of any new initiative, solution or project by enabling employees to more seamlessly adopt those changes. Heinz has four direct reports, but also facilitates a global community of change leaders. In turn, a “hub-and-spoke” model, comprised of various change teams across ExxonMobil’s portfolio, works specific initiatives within individual parts of the organization.
Heinz is passionate about establishing enterprise-wide change management practices and is a certified Prosci change management practitioner and trainer. “A lot of my people don’t necessarily have a change management background,” Heinz says. “I look for people who are eager to learn and adapt quickly. Strong communication skills are important. Analytical skills are also a must.
“When it comes to implementing change, we’re not the domain experts. In our role, we help people think through how they adapt to change, coordinate activities to integrate the change, and guide them through exercises and assessments to determine the impact of the change.”