Change is part of everyday life, but when you are the one introducing it, it’s easy to be seen as the enemy. So how do you increase engagement and buy-in from staff so that your changes are more likely to reap the rewards you need?
Involve people early.
It’s not always possible, but challenge yourself to involve people in the solution. Value their perspective and use it as an opportunity to share yours.
Help people to discover why change is important. You may be tired of talking about it but it is the start of the journey for others
Value your middle managers.
They can be your greatest advocates, but don’t expect them to champion change if they don’t really understand it themselves.
Be visible… ‘walk slowly and listen!’.
Really listen, summarise, paraphrase, demonstrate understanding. Resist the temptation to give answers until people have heard that you understand them.
Treat people with respect.
You will be judged on how you treat people. If jobs are at risk and people may be made redundant, invest in that process and the people. They will take your reputation with them. Handled badly, staff you want to stay will walk.
Respect the process.
We know that people process change differently. Fear and anxiety lead to protectionist behaviour, when you want creativity, innovation and change.
Consciously consider your own drivers and values. You may be changing the values of the organisation, even if you don’t intend to. Acknowledge and deal with this.
Next time: 7 Tips for Surviving Change
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