Change is part of life, but not everyone embraces it as easily. Knowing how to support people through change will allow you to grow your business successfully.
Often mistakenly thought of as a top down directive, when applied to businesses, change can come from any driver, internal or external. You only have to think of the recent covid pandemic to recognise that change can come from any direction.
Whether it is ideas from staff, new business strategies or external pressures, the success of your business relies upon having a well supported and managed change process.
Here are 7 tips to help you support change in your business.
1. Decide on a Change Model
We recommend using a change model that is used consistently throughout your whole organisation. However, if you have not yet established a business-wide change model there are plenty that you can choose from. Kotter’s 8 Stage Model, PROSCI ADKAR model, Kurt Lewin – freeze-change-unfreeze model to name just a few.
2. Get Clear on your Communication
Start early, be consistent and answer honestly. If you don’t know, say so, but also answer those unknowns as soon as you can to avoid rumour and uncertainty. Build integrity into your change.
Make sure all communications address:
WHAT will change and
WHAT will stay the same.
3. Schedule Consultation
Have a plan to involve and integrate everyone that will be affected by the change.
Plan upfront so people will have a chance to contribute, and feel communicated with. For change to be successful it needs to be owned by everyone impacted and driven by those with the original ideas.
4. Identify Support Requirements
As with all change, some people will require more support than others. However, the type of change and the level of impact on the individual will influence the level of support required.
Look for whether individuals are needing reassurance, skills development, coaching or training.
Allocate time to review plans and be open to justifying changes to help people who are struggling to understand why they need to change.
5. Identify your Change Enablers
There will be those within the business who have the skills or enthusiasm for your change. These people are not necessarily the Senior Leaders, but rather the influencers who can help drive the change.
Consider allocating roles such as Change Ambassadors and Change Sponsors to continue to build support for your change.
Of course it goes without saying that whilst the change enablers do not have to come from the top, the support certainly needs to. Senior Leadership plays an important role in supporting and championing change.
6. Recognise the Wins
When facing a large change taking time to recognise the steps that you have taken can help with motivation throughout the change.
Think of it like climbing everest. It is not climbed in a day, but rather in stages. So recognise and celebrate the stages of your change. You can even look to build celebration into your change plan so it becomes part of the change culture.
7. Set Foundations for a New Company Culture
Change is a constant and should be seen as the norm, not the exception.
Businesses that are highly successful welcome change with a ‘growth mindset’ and apply this to both their business strategy and their people.
A growth mindset is one where learning new ways is embraced and individuals feel empowered to share new ideas that could be innovative and ultimately transformative for the business.
When a growth mindset is fostered throughout an organisation it lays down the foundations for future growth and resilience. This then enables you, your people, your teams and your business to be BRILLIANT.
Identifying the steps involved for successful change is just the start. If you need help putting processes in place to support your change, get in touch.
We have experience of working with a range of teams, individuals and businesses to support their change strategy and develop a growth mindset.
Whether it is supporting skills development for your teams, or helping to clarify your communication strategy, we can help.