How well are you managing change?

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Imagine how boring life would be without the change of seasons?

 

Use change and change management to refresh your operations

Change management is about any approach that will transition individuals and the organisation using methods intended to re-direct the use of resources, business process, budget allocations, or other modes of operation that significantly reshape an organisation and the way it does business.

Any change demands the gathering of information and knowledge. Analysis, planning, and implementation discipline along with the redesign of strategy, systems, or processes are critical.  The change-management approach should be integrated into a program for decision making, informing and enabling alignment with the purpose and strategic direction.

In times of change, a leader will be called upon to lead the change in their business. Many will wait for their leaders to tell them what to do. In many cases communication between managers and their people is poor and there is no strategy to effectively announce and implement the change. Top management should not be expected to manage the transition of individual work teams within the business.

The businesses want answers. When there are no ready solutions they often blame others for leaving them in the dark. The best advice for these managers is to stop waiting and become a leader of their business.

 

“You can’t change your genetics, but you can change your attitude, your environment, the people you listen to and the things you do. If you want to change, become action oriented and just get started”. Peter Sergeant

 

If they sit around waiting, the wave of change may wash over them and drown them. To stay afloat they must learn to manage change. Change is a two edged sword, it offers both uncertainty and opportunity. How you manage yourself and your businesses will have a big impact.

Here’s the scenario. The managers announce at a meeting an impending change and ask, ‘Are there any questions?’ Then dead silence. What’s on everyone’s minds might be, ‘Why are we making this change”? But fear of being branded a troublemaker keeps their lips sealed.

Management is often threatened by tough questions such as, “Why should we change. Is this the only solution”? Or, “we’re happy the way things are’.

Managing change is not so much about overcoming resistance. It’s more about your team accepting something different is necessary, and asking them how to initiate the change. You are not asking them to ‘buy-in’ to a solution; you are empowering them to use their brainpower to come up with one.

Do not go to the businesses with answers. Go to them with questions and help them to discover the answers.

Your businesses current situation is the result of the actions that have been taken, because of the way your people think and this was determined by ideas and knowledge they have acquired over the years. It, therefore, stands to reason that:

  • If we change the ideas and knowledge inputs,
  • Then it will change the way the people think.
  • Which will change the actions that they will take?
  • Which will change their situation?
  • Which will allow them to create what everyone wants?

 

Any significant change creates people issues.

Jobs will be changed, new skills and capabilities must be developed, and employees will be uncertain and resistant.

Dealing with these issues on a reactive, case-by-case basis inhibits progress and could put the business at risk. A more formal overarching approach for managing change and engaging key stakeholders and leaders should be developed early and adapted often as change moves through the organisation.

 

[read more=”Personal Experience” less=”Personal Experience”]

Personal Experience:

To me, change is like a breath of fresh air. In summer I look forward to the autumn and in winter I look forward to the spring. Each change in season brings new approaches to the things I am involved with.

I know I can achieve the same feelings each time I implement a major change in my business. It might be a new process, some new technology or a change in a work habit.

While many changes might be small they always seem to add up, sometimes it’s exhilarating like putting your foot on the accelerator.

There is nothing worse than turning up to the same old boring business every day, where enthusiasm and motivation are gradually sapped away until there is suddenly a loud bang and a puff of pale blue smoke and your business disappears.

No change program goes completely according to plan. People react in unexpected ways, areas of anticipated resistance fall away, and the external environment continues to change and disrupt. Effectively managing change requires a continual reassessment of its impact and the organisation’s willingness and ability to adopt the next wave of transformation that will almost certainly be required.

I find that if people know what’s really important to them, it’s much easier for them to commit to change.

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