In today’s world, change is a fact of life. While managers are supposed to be a resource to help employees engage in change, what if they are also having trouble adapting? Change has become not only unavoidable but continuous. Once you think you have survived one, another one is knocking at the door. Would it not be better if, instead of thinking of change as a matter of “survival”, to think of it as in terms of success?
Let’s be honest: it’s impossible to go through change perfectly and without error, but there are ways to make it more manageable! In helping companies transition through change, here are three ways we have found to make change easier on everyone:
1. Have a plan
A change is a series of small steps in a new direction. The more adventurous of you who are comfortable navigating new waters may neglect to make a plan, but it is important to remember that an organizational change implies that you are not alone on your voyage!
Tip: At both the planning and start-up phases, take the time to define and share: the objective of the change, your vision of the expected result, the action plan and the impact of the change on employees. If possible, build a team who will be responsible for overseeing the change. By being transparent and ensuring fluid communication from the start, employees will be more engaged throughout the various steps.
2. Get buy-in
Change is often met with resistance or even mistrust, especially at the deployment stage. Although their intentions are good, our colleagues, boss or staff can sometimes be obstacles to making the change a success.
Tip: Keep an open mind throughout the process, listen to people’s concerns and ensure that the change is well understood. This will help you focus on the positive, answer questions constructively, make any needed adjustments, and maintain a climate of confidence to facilitate people’s adherence and acceptance.
3. Provide on-going support
Any change to work processes will take employees out of their comfort zone and undoubtedly questions will be raised. Proper guidance and training is essential at all stages of the change, not only at the beginning.
Tip: Offering everyone a half-day training on a new information system, for example, will not necessarily ensure that everyone is comfortable once and for all! Specific training needs (coaching, workshops, updates, Q&A sessions, etc.) may need to be offered before, during and after the change depending on the scope of the project.
By planning and communicating the various stages of a change, and by providing managers with proper tools and resources, they will be better equipped to experience the changes positively and accompany their team through the transition.
Luckily, not all changes have to be a nightmare!
Would you like support in change management? Contact one of Pvisio’s HR Advisors here to receive a free consultation or by phone at 514-908-4799.