The name “ADKAR” is an acronym based on the five building blocks:
- Awareness of the need for change
- Desire to participate and support the change
- Knowledge on how to change
- Ability to implement required skills and behaviors
- Reinforcement to sustain the change
The five building blocks are sequential. Successful change begins with Awareness. After Awareness comes the personal decision to participate, Desire. Following Desire comes the Knowledge and Ability to make the change. And finally, in order for the change to stay in place, Reinforcement is needed.
When a person has all five elements – Awareness, Desire, Knowledge, Ability and Reinforcement – he or she has made the change successfully. When a change fails or is not implemented, it is usually because one or more of the five blocks is missing.