Change is inevitable.
In fact, it may be the only true constant in life.
But when change comes upon your company, do rumors start flying around? And your employees suffer with stress, frustration, and fear?
Conflict increases, productivity goes down, and you met with a wall of resistance – especially from middle managers.
But you still need to change … change to meet new consumer demands, implement new technology, or even just so that you can impress the board.
What started off sounding like a great idea is now a huge headache. There’s rebellion in the ranks. Your employees feel disconnected and some are beginning to jump ship.
You may even think that none of this is worth it – after all, the way you were doing things has worked for a long time, hasn’t it?
But, the unfortunate truth is if you don’t innovate, your company will stagnate, and then wither and die. Sure it may take years, but without the change you’ll become irrelevant.
Instead of trying to change, you’ve now got a management crisis on your hands.
This could have been avoided, if you’d implemented a few key steps before and during the whole process.
- Clearly identify the need for change, explain what will happen if you stay on the same path. Will you continue to lose profit share? Is there some new regulation that will cause you to close? The important thing is that everyone has a clear understanding of why the change is necessary.
- Build a vision. What will the results of the change be? How will your company be better or stronger? How will it impact each division within your company. Make a list of benefits of what each stake-holder will get.
- Create a sound strategy. Remember that change never goes as smoothly as planned. Allow for hiccups and unforeseen circumstances – like slow adoption among your staff.
- Follow your plan. Many businesses fail at this step, wasting time, money, and effort. By not cutting corners, you give yourself the best chance of successful implementation.
- Check in with your people. How are they buying in? Getting feedback here can help get you back on track when your plans get derailed.
- You will run into barriers. Be prepared to address them by anticipating as many as possible.
- Set up milestones. Share progress with your entire company and celebrate successes along the way. Change is hard and your people need to stay motivated to carry out the change to completion.
Change management is overwhelming. It means that you’ll need to get out of your comfort zone and lead your teams through challenges.
But, here’s the secret to effective change management. It comes down to being a leader rather than a manager. Now here’s the bad news. If your company is like most, your managers most likely may lack skills of very good leaders. You see, a leader is someone who inspires, who serves those who work for them. Managers use tactics like fear to get work done.
Build true leadership today.
“I had some skepticism. As you know, my management team and I had some skepticism when you first introduced us to the program. But the first training sessions eliminated any concern about the value of the program.” – John Phillips, General Manager, Boise Cascade.
“Stronger leadership permeated our organization. Not only have I seen direct improvements in individuals’ performances due to your training, but many of these same individuals have displayed stronger leadership which has permeated our organization as a whole.” – Jason Bodford, President, EPES Carriers.
Are you facing change? Click here to find out more about how to manage your change so that you can achieve your goals.