Smart Ways of Managing Change

The business world is dynamic and increasingly becoming border-less with innovative systems and processes constantly challenging it. Change is a buzzword in many companies and management theories and it is defined as a process that involves ideas, processes and systems that are driven by people within a given framework.

However, this is where most organisations get it wrong. They deploy change as projects that are set to create processes that include dynamic steps, whereby people need to comply with, and condition themselves to work their way with the onward changes.

People do not change unless they believe that they cannot continue to stay where they are’. This is an established fact which connotes that if a company expects its employees to embrace change then it should present a compelling reason that enables people to understand why they cannot stay the way they are and how a change is going to move them to a position where they can rise to their full potential.

Most organisations are constantly confronting this fact because irrespective of the direction of the management decision, every change involves people being affected and the people affected need to adapt and alter their behaviours to manage it.  Most people function with the philosophy of, ‘If it isn’t broken then don’t fix it’. Of course, there is a measure of shock connected to change irrespective of the magnitude, but the problem arises when shock leads to denial and from denial to defiance. While project managers need to consider several factors when trying to switch things up, the people being affected by it need to adapt to it and alter their behaviours to manage change!

There are two levels of structural approach in order to manage change effectively, this includes the organisational and ground levels. The organisational level involves creating a strong people-engagement process while implementation at the ground level requires building personal commitment and managing sustained performance.

Change management is helping people to assume new behaviours, accept and take ownership of change instead of resisting it. The way change is executed is as important as the strategy or solution that is being implemented. However, there are ways to ensure change is managed effectively such as creating a strong mission statement to help the people impacted understand why they cannot continue where they are and therefore accept that they must move forward. It is also important to build a robust personal connect with people at the lower level on areas that they can benefit from with the change and personalize it for success.

To ensure success, it is necessary to conduct a periodic review with stakeholders on the proposed project to ensure that the change stages are measured. This will help the team to move forward on next steps required for action.

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