Change in the workplace and coping with adversity
In today’s workplace one of the only constants is change with many change initiatives failing to achieve their expected business objectives; the government set to step up the pace of change in the public sector even further and employees are now at risk of becoming resistant to change.
To ensure your business transformation initiative doesn’t become undermined by falling morale, lost productivity, or industrial action, follow eXceeding’s top 5 tips on how to cope with change in the workplace:
- Set clear people and business objectives - Many organisations assume that once the business objectives have been met, the project is a success. The reality is that in order to create long-term sustainable benefits, measurable objectives for both the business and its employees must be set from the beginning. Your objectives should enhance productivity and engagement levels, and this requires careful planning and activity in redefining roles.
- Help staff to embrace change - Employees have to be helped to embrace change. At the most fundamental level, this is about helping them to redefine their value in terms of the skills and experience they can bring to your organisation, but ultimately your clients.
- Communication is key - Rumours and innuendo, if allowed to propagate, can be massively damaging to any change initiative. Early, clear and frequent communication is vital to ensure employees feel they are part of the process and even develop a deeper level of understanding and bond with the business.
- Listen to employees - If your organisation is struggling to realise the value of a change initiative, the chances are that management considered it a success before it was fully embedded. To ensure survivors’ resentment doesn’t result in staff turnover, or diminished productivity, give staff a chance to vent frustrations. Listen to their concerns and think creatively about how to act on them, to ensure they fully buy in to the process.
- Support managers - Don’t assume that managers who were effective before will automatically have the leadership skills required to deliver the change initiative, build new teams and continuously maintain morale.
Change in the workplace is unlikely to get any easier and will continue to confront us in waves and negotiating these changes can seem challenging. However through implementing a coherent change initiative and following these tips, it is possible to deliver a positive experience for all those involved.