Program Development Guide
1. Organizational Readiness
It is important to consider the capacity of an organization and the community in which your program operates before implementing a new program, intervention, or organizational policy. In many cases, these attempts are unsuccessful due to insufficient organizational readiness for change. Organizational readiness is defined as “the extent to which organizational members are psychologically and behaviorally prepared to implement organizational change.” A high level of organizational readiness is usually associated with a successful change because organization members are more likely to invest in the change initiative and exhibit more cooperative behaviors, resulting more effective implementation of the change. Below summarizes key considerations when assessing if your organization is ready to initiate or enhance a peer support program.
- Organizational culture and experience when it comes to managing change
- Buy-in from key stakeholders (e.g., decision makers, community partners, targeted audiences, internal staff members, health care providers)
- A secure funding source and/or continuing fundraising mechanism
- Facility, equipment and other resources that are crucial for peer support delivery
- A dedicated staff person for program coordination
To learn more, SAMHSA and USDHHS’s Sustaining Grassroots Community-Based Program: A Toolkit for Community- and Faith-Based Service Providers (Section 2) have substantial content related to organizational assessment and readiness. Also, Peers for Progress project at Alivio Medical Center has an assessment tool that examines organizational support for a diabetes peer support program. This tool is adapted from the Assessment of Primary Care Resources and Supports for Chronic Disease Self-Management (PCRS) developed by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Diabetes Initiative.
|SAMHSA USDHHS’s Sustaining Grassroots Community-Based Program: A Toolkit for Community- and Faith-Based Service Providers – Section 2||This toolkit provides information and practical tools to guide sustainability planning efforts. It has substantial content related to organizational assessment and readiness.|
|Alivio’s Assessment of Primary Care Resources and Supports for Diabetes Self-management||Adapted from the Assessment of Primary Care Resources and Supports for Chronic Disease Self-Management (PCRS) by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Diabetes Initiative this tool examines organizational support for a diabetes peer support program|
 Kotter JP (1996). Leading change. Boston: Harvard Business Press; 1996  Weiner BJ, Amick H, Lee SY (2008). Conceptualization and measurement of organizational readiness for change: A review of the literature in health service research and other fields. Med Care Res Rev 2008, (65(4):379–436
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