Organizational Change – is it all too much?

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Organizational Change – is it all too much?

It’s no longer debatable as to whether organizations will go through change in order to stay competitive.  What we do know is that the complexities of change are vast, and when change is not carefully managed, well the results can be devastating.

So…how do you start to understand the impact of change within your organization?  And how do we consider the needs of employees, and ensure a process, and structure is in place to support effective implementation?  And is it “all too much”!

Well not if you manage it well…….One critical starting point is to determine which employees are going to have to alter or change the way they perform their jobs.  In other words, who in the organization will have to exhibit new behaviors, use new tools or processes in their day-to-day work?  The Data shows that the vast majority of all employees will see either direct or indirect effects on their workday due to organizational change.

Successful organizational change hinges on the individual’s ability to change behaviors and transition to the new ways of doing business.  It could be changes to the way you deliver products or services, use of new technology, new performance measures, or new inventory controls.  Solid strategies and careful planning can support the transition and encourage the behaviors and adoption of new practices needed for success.

The reality is that each and every employee is likely to play a key role in embracing, adopting and using the new processes, technology or business standards being introduced.   And there are many other roles to be played.  Central to success is that leaders and executives of the organization must authorize, sponsor, fund and launch the change initiatives.   And it doesn’t stop there.  They must be present, and visibly – in the face of employees – champion the change they endorse.

Additionally, mid managers often feel stuck in the middle of the change, as they are coaching and many times dealing with resistance within the ranks.  Mid managers are coaching many employees and influencing their absorptive capacity for change Leadership needs to give mid managers and supervisors the necessary tools to deal with the resistance.  Mid managers are expected to be agents of change but also are personally experiencing the change and transition themselves.  This is one of the more difficult roles to play.   And this is typically why in times of change it is critical that employees hear from senior managers, and executives.  Ensure that at the onset, communications strategies are directed towards mid managers as the audience so they’ll be well equipped to mitigate resistance and help employee’s with the transition.  Ensuring dedicated resources for all employees, and being visible as a champion for change is the executive’s role.  This will increase the likelihood of success and early adoption.  As someone once said, the top leader is the “director of the play, versus one of the actors”.  Therefore, enable and equip people to be successful in coaching and bridging the implementation with solid solutions and by demonstrating commitment.

Eventually, being good at managing change becomes part of the “DNA” of the organization – and is a means for performance management in meeting goals and creating sustainable competitive advantage.  Contact me for information on change management at mkathy@rogers.com

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About the Author:

20 years as a change leader and senior manager, creating excellent customer experiences while building strong, engaged, committed teams. Extensive expertise in small business start up, hospitality management services, strategic planning, and communications/media relations.

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