Workplace change CAN be positive and empowering—just put people first!
When the word change is uttered in the workplace, it usually makes people feel anxious and full of dread. The simple fact is, many organizations still manage change poorly or worse, they ignore it!
It’s entirely possible to engage and empower people during a difficult period of change. How? By taking a human approach and putting people first.
Here are 10 ways to improve change within your organization…
1. Remember the why
Always remind yourself why the change you’re making is necessary. What value does it add? If you understand the why, you’ll be able to communicate the change clearly to others.
Put yourself in the shoes of those impacted by the change. Talk to them, understand their feelings, thoughts, worries. Put them first and really listen.
3. Involve everyone from the get-go
Give people a voice and allow them to have a say before final decisions are made.
4. Be open and transparent
Make sure the communications you send are not boring, process driven ‘business speak’. If you’re open, honest and transparent, you’ll gain the trust of all those involved.
5. Hold open discussions
Don’t just focus on the what, help people understand the why of change. With a greater understanding and space for discussions and feedback, you’ll connect with people on a more human level.
6. Keep your door open
Don’t send out communications with phrases like ‘we’ve an open-door policy’ and ‘our door is always open’—OPEN IT! Invite people in for discussions. Let them know they have a voice and can influence the outcome.
7. Provide useful information
Before sending out communications, ask yourself, “is it useful… relevant…accurate… up-to-date?” Provide a clear viewpoint. Keep asking yourself what you really want to communicate.
8. Remember, actions speak louder than words
Don’t just say it, actually make things happen, show you’ve listened by putting people’s suggestions into actions.
9. Celebrate small victories along the way
Celebrating small victories along the way will help your team stay motivated, and it will remind them of the overall goal.
10. Mistakes are good, it means you’re human!
Just ensure you’re taking note of where things went wrong. This will help you improve going forward.
There’s no way to sugar coat it, getting change right is difficult. But it can be beneficial for all those involved when you take a human approach and put people first.
Does your organization consider the human aspect of change?
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This article is a response to the #ChangeBlogChallenge on Change Communication. If you’d like to take part please visit the Conversations of Change website.