Navigating The Extinction Zone – Guide to Change Management – Part 4: Considering the People
It is very difficult to achieve what we want to achieve without other people being involved in some way, shape or form.
And people present the biggest challenge when it comes to managing change. People can be our biggest barrier to navigating The Extinction Zone, particularly when they are resistant to change, which many are.
And it makes sense when we know that change takes people out of their comfort zones which creates instability and uncertainty. Then they will do anything to regain stability which may include some or all of the following:
- They will fight to keep things the same…keep the status quo even though they know it could lead to less productivity. They want to stay with what they know so are very resistant to any change.
- They will go along with the change, not fully understanding it and when this happens then there is a flow on effect to quality of productivity and constructive feedback as to what is working and what is not.
- They will go along with the talk of change and continue to do what they have always done because they believe the change won’t last and ‘things’ will be back to what they were before you know it…it’s happened like this too many times before because those in charge of managing the change don’t know what they are doing.
- They don’t come on board because they feel they have not been listened to or had the opportunity to contribute to the change process. It is clear here that the rational and emotional sides of change have not been considered.
These responses are guaranteed to crop up when the previous three parts in this series –
- Identifying the need – why change needs to happen
- Specific system considerations – what parts of your business is affected by the change
- Getting into action – clearly planning what steps and task need to be completed.
are not done, are not done clearly and/or are communicated poorly. People feel change is forced on them with no input and all too often they do not believe they have the necessary, consistent supports to make the process manageable or doable.
That is why Part 4 – Considering the People is crucial, so they are supported and communication happens consistently and with purpose.
And when considering the people, then it definitely requires using both the rational and emotional sides of thinking…how both the rational and emotional sides of the people affect the change process when planning and implementing the steps to reach the desired outcome.
So use the following 6 questions to help you with meeting the needs of those impacted by the change.
- Who in the workplace is affected by these changes?
- Who needs training to gain the required skills?
- What skills are required for these changes to become a reality and who has these skills?
- If a restructure is required, based on the answers above, who will stay, move or leave?
- What supports are required for the people affected?
- What is the communication strategy for each step along the way, considering the different needs of the people?
- Remember to consider both the rational and emotional sides when answering these questions
- Make sure you have gone through the previous three parts and use the answered from these to support your considerations for the people affected.
- Always keep in mind how these changes will improve your service/products to clients.
- Ask for input from the people affected when answering these questions.
When all is said and done, people are your greatest asset and your role as a leader of change navigating The Extinction Zone, particularly now that you know your business is a system that is multi-dimensional, means it’s your role to ensure your people do not become a liability.
Use the template provided to get you started. Step up and support the change by supporting the people.
And again remember if you would like a hand to help you undertake change, then contact me.