VBA I-Change Certification Program
March - May 2022

Conference/Seminar/School Courtney Fleming

VBA’s I-Change Certification Program gives you the leadership knowledge, skills, and tools you will need to drive any organizational change initiative. Change is often talked about, but the ability to move people and projects requires leaders who understand the foundational elements of change and how to apply those elements to real life situations. During these three interactive monthly sessions, Donna Highfill will share her 25+ years of change leadership and will guide you through both learning and application. You’ll apply VBA’s change methods to one of your active change projects. You will have change challenges and change war rooms where you will support each other, learn through discussion, and perfect the art of quick application and effective behavioral management. Graduates will earn the distinction of being a VBA I-Change Certified Leader.

I-Change Challenge Sessions: These two 45-minute virtual discussions are voluntary and will occur between sessions, giving the change certification participants a chance to ask their facilitator, Donna Highfill, and each other about their current bank change challenge. Part of the promise of this certification is to help participants through a specific change that their bank is encountering – a challenge that will be presented as a case study on the last day of class to bank executives. These virtual sessions will simply provide support as participants apply what is learned in each change session and apply those learnings to the development of their change challenge.

I-Change War Rooms: These two 45-minute virtual discussions are voluntary and will occur between sessions, giving the change certification participants a chance to discuss one or two real-time “hot topics” for banking that go beyond the individual change challenge case studies, providing a forum for exploring major points of impact and actively applying a change agent perspective by sharing ideas, debating, and thinking of ways a change agent might help their bank through the situation. Instead of specific application as seen in the I-Change Challenge Session, this will offer the opportunity to learn how to mentally frame change while maintaining a problem-solving perspective.

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VBA I-Change Certification Program Recommendation Form

Learning Objectives (Knowledge, Skills Attitude)

After this change certification, you will:

  • Know and be able to apply the basics of change theory and fundamentals.
  • Be able to lead change from a project and behavioral perspective.
  • Be able to both understand adaptability and become nimbler in your leadership.
  • Know the five key elements of the VBA I-Change Process.
  • Develop the skill of effective change assessment and be able to quickly assess needs.
  • Be able to use a gap analysis and determine training and communication gaps.
  • Be able to work with colleagues to create constant communication that drives change.
  • Be able to develop and establish change advocates for driving change daily.
  • Understand and apply change integration.
  • Interact with others in the class in a “change war room,” participating in active discussion.

Session 1: A Leadership Change Foundation 

Session Dates/Times (In Person): March 16, 1:00pm – 4:30pm & March 17, 9:00am – 4:30pm

Challenge Date/Time (Virtual): March 30, 3:00pm – 3:45pm

War Room Date/Time (Virtual): March 30, 3:45pm – 4:30pm

  • Basic Principles of Change
    • Understand the classic theories of Kotter, Conner, Kubler-Ross
    • Apply the change principles to a current change initiative
  • Elements of Successful Change
    • Why change fails
    • How to set the stage and kick-off successful change
  • Project vs. Human Dynamics
    • Effectively leading change projects
    • Moving your organization through the people side of change
  • Personal vs. Organizational Change
    • Understanding the Personal Change Model and how it impacts your change leadership
    • Understanding the Organizational Change Model and how it impacts your change leadership
  • Adaptability
    • Preparing for common points of resistance – what they are and how to anticipate them
    • Learning the art of adaptation as a leader
  • Change and Mindfulness
    • How to breathe through the change your are leading
    • Keeping the soul and mind steady through messaging
  • Introduction of I-CHANGE components

Change Challenge: Create a Personal change case study; Create an Org change case study

Change War Room: Overall bank challenge discussion concerning gap analysis, organizational change and adaptation leadership.

Session 2: Identify, Ignite and Illuminate Change - April 13, 1:00pm – 4:30pm & April 14 9:00am – 4:30pm

Challenge Date/Time (Virtual): April 27, 3:00pm – 3:45pm

War Room Date/Time (Virtual): April 27, 3:45pm – 4:30pm

  • Identify
    • How to conduct a Current State Assessment
    • How to deliver a Change Readiness Assessment
    • Determining Change Impact Levels
    • Be able to understand the audience impacted
    • Conduct gap analysis of current state, future state, and skills required to bridge that gap.
  • Ignite
    • Creating Leadership Sponsorship
    • Be able to understand and communicate the benefits of change
    • Learn to communicate in a way that builds constant conversation
    • Learn how to instill urgency
    • Establishing a feedback loop
  • Illuminate
    • Establish a clear Training Plan
    • Create internal advocates
    • Select key managers and train for middle-out impact
    • Prepare to spotlight wins


Change Challenge: Organizational change case study; gap analysis; training needed

Change War Room: Identifying and Igniting – what is most important based upon our current topics?

Session 3: Implement and Integrate - May 18, 1:30pm – 4:30pm & May 19, 9:00am – 4:30pm

  • Implement
    • Create peer coaches and advocates to help lead middle-out
    • Clarify behaviors and expectations for each phase
    • Create implementation plans and teams
    • Provide daily manager exercises and stand-up meetings
    • Assess with check-ins
  • Integrate
    • How to lead change through tough times
    • Understand integration vs. installation and how to lead both
    • How to constantly assess and monitor mistakes
    • How to lead change to the “norm”
  • Review of I CHANGE
    • Key components online test
    • Provide final assignment
  • Questions
  • On-going war room for interested parties


Change Challenge: Change case study – what are the challenges for implementing and integrating?

Change War Room: How to handle specific challenges.

To Earn the VBA Change certified leader designation, participants must:

  • Attend All Sessions In Person
  • Participate in a Change Challenge Presented to Executives
  • Participate in a Change War Room Observed by Executives 

 About the Instructor – Donna Highfill

Change is a lot like working out – you know you need it; you feel better after you do it, but sometimes you just can’t seem to make yourself get going.  Donna Highfill gets it, and that’s why her passion has always been helping leaders change the story of their organization through incremental actions that she calls “microchange” that lead to improved performance.  More than a consultant, Donna Highfill has also been a Director of Human Capital, an internal Sales Consultant, a Mortgage Cross-Sell leader and a VP of HR. She combines her experience inside and outside of organizations to bring continually improved change and organizational development strategies.

Program Cost:

The VBA Change Certification Program is $2,750 per participant and includes all instruction, materials and meals while onsite.  Hotel costs are not included in the program.