Organizations often struggle with change because traditional change management processes do not consider employee resistance. For organizational change management to work, it needs to encourage all employees and not work as a total dictatorship. Here we take a look at five critical components of a change management strategy.
Communication is a critical component of implementing change. Effective communication needs to be targeted for the individual employee groups affected by the change. And it must focus on how it will affect their daily lives and information they need to know. An effective communication plan needs to present the right information at the right time, in the right way, and from the right sender.
Depending on the level and scope of change required, organizations need to have buy-in and support from the matching level of leadership. The sponsorship level must match the type of change and the employee groups being affected by the change. Having a sponsor is not just a tick-the-box exercise; you need to ensure the sponsor will actively and visibly participate in supporting and encouraging the change process.
Resistance management is a central component of change management. Understanding the most common reasons for employees to object to change gives organizations the opportunity to address these factors before introducing the change. Organizations cannot always make employees feel comfortable with change. But by making the effort to understand, you can minimize discomfort.
With the communication plan approved and the initial message issued to employees, it’s important that organizations reassure employees that training will be available. For effective training, organizations should identify the skills and capabilities that employees will need to overcome the forthcoming changes. Giving employees the confidence to deal with the change will ensure a more streamlined change management process.
The success of the change management process will ultimately be determined by whether or not the change sticks. Organizations must follow through with reinforcement mechanisms; otherwise, employees tend to revert to the old way of doing things. Offering additional training or 1-1 support will help employees overcome active issues during the changeover process.
Organizational change management is rarely straightforward. Ensuring a structured approach in the change management process will reduce the risk of a new system or other change being rejected by the employees. Good luck with your organizational change management process!
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