Engaging in Change

Change is inevitable, so park the debate and move on with your plans.  Right?, well… No, it isn’t as easy as just being dismissive.

There are so many examples of Ludite thinking that stalls Change in a business, but the one thing is for sure, if members of your Executive Team don’t support it and your Employees don’t understand it, then Change is unlikely to happen.

To take the emotion out of Change you have to consider that it is an integrated business process, like budgeting, business planning, selling and service.  If employees challenge you with a “Why Change?” and they do not know its context and their role, then the Change process has been isolated from the operational side of your business and will not work to the desire outcome.

The starting place to get this moving is the Boardroom, then through your senior managers and then onto the employees.

You need to have a clearly defined Strategy of what you want your company to be and how you expect it to sustain this position.  A good well worded and pictorially presented Strategy should be something that gets dusted off once a year to keep it fresh, but you need to avoid the temptation of having a fluid strategy which can be damaging for stakeholders and definitely unsettling for customers and employees.

A clear Change Story and a Change Programme plan is important.  Employees need to see what the end goal is and how they can work to make change happen.  Early engagement with staff will provide for stronger solutions and get some employees thinking of solutions themselves.

The final and critical part is about execution and measuring your results.  Don’t be disappointed when only 80% of your plans are built and you are struggling to finish them off.  Launch your Change actions and derive early benefit.  It is better to be directionally correct and get traction, than wait for the perfect ‘wave’.

In summary, People are the most important investment in any Change Programme, make sure they are engaged in Change.

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