9 Proven Approaches to Successful Change Management

9 Proven Approaches to Successful Change Management
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In today’s world, you must innovate or risk failure. This is especially relevant in the business landscape, where technological advancements are forcing the hands of companies.

Organizations must be vigilant about their approach to change, with strategies that are readily adaptable. Gone are the days of businesses changing their processes every three years. The era we live in is forever evolving, and to cut through the digital static we must take a flexible approach.

Though change doesn’t excite people, part of your change management philosophy is to influence staff perspective. Change doesn’t have to be uncertain, and people will embrace the unknown if positive outcomes are promoted.

Change management consulting can help you implement effective processes, leveraging the advice of trained individuals.

You can outsource change management consulting, or alternatively cultivate professionals internally. In today’s age, you’re probably best to employ a fully qualified change professional, who can lead your team with positive transitions.

To optimize results, you’ll need to address the behaviors, conversations, and processes involved in transcending your business.

Change management consulting is vital, but simply employing a professional and leaving them to it is asking for trouble.

Instead, you should instill a proven approach to successful change, but how do you achieve this? Read on to discover more about how you can generate organizational growth. You might need to step outside of your comfort zone, but with these top considerations you’ll be well on your way!

Start With Executives

Your change management strategy requires clarity, conviction, and vision. Everything starts with executives, whose belief in the process will increase the likelihood change is accepted organization wide.

Rather than simply devising plans for change on an intellectual level, high-ranking staff must personally invest in the same the frontline do. Even though they might not be directly involved in change, executives must prove a personal commitment which aligns with their team’s perspective.

For the most part, change doesn’t fail due to poor strategy, it fails due to fundamental uncertainty and disbelief. Executives must prove they’re capable of bringing change to life, transparently showing their ability to transform.

Use change management consulting to engage leaders, and consider culture change for strategic growth.

Follow a Process

Organizations must take a structured approach to implementing change. They must clearly understand their current status, and what they want to achieve with change processes.

This creates a foundation you can build on, utilizing clearly defined goals to keep everyone moving in the right direction.

Discover a proven process through online research, and modify it according to your own circumstances. It’s essential you can modify your change strategy to meet an ever-evolving digital landscape, so maintain a flexible approach.

Evaluate the Needs/Perceptions of Stakeholders

During each stage of planning, consider how stakeholders will be affected, and how you can overcome potential issues that will prohibit growth.

Understanding their reactions to certain approaches will help you gauge how to sensitively implement change patterns.

See things through the eyes of stakeholders, appreciating their reaction to uncertainty, and how you can alleviate resistance. Think about how changes will impact everyone, to enable better engagement with clarity surrounding your outcomes.

Focus On Managers

Managers are a pivotal portal between executives and frontline employees. They can communicate the vision of change leaders better than anyone else, yet are often overlooked during the change process.

Incorporate input from managers, who can contribute valuable knowledge to improve change strategies. They will feel more accepted as a result, and more likely to act in line with what’s best for the company.

Investment in change is weakened when managers can’t operationalize them, since they play a crucial role in understanding strategy, and most importantly in communicating it with relevant employees.

 

Consider Individual Differences

Everyone reacts differently to change, and will go through their own personal transition.

There are three phases to consider: letting go, exploration, and acceptance. The final stage can only occur once staff have let go of the past, but be aware that some will take longer than others.

Leaders are unlikely to express their true feelings, but it’s important to remember they’re experiencing similar emotions, especially when personally invested.

Change leaders should share their personal change experiences, because this can be comforting and reassuring for staff. A good leader will respect staff reactions to loss, and empathize through effective communication.

One-on-one conversations are useful to lead your team to the promised land. You should provide clarity throughout the transition phase, offering new opportunities in place of lost ones.

Celebrate Wins Early and Often!

Successful elements of strategy should be celebrated. This promotes positivity, prioritizing behaviors that lead to your end goal. Incentivize staff by celebrating wins, improving the potential for replication of behaviors.

Engage in regular dialogue that references success stories, to reinforce staff that small contributions all critical for meeting long-term targets.

Take a positive approach to change management consulting, and you’ll be one step closer to achieving your objectives!

Christopher Smith
Chris is the Lead Author & Editor of Change Blog. Chris established the Change blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to Change Management.
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