The pandemic taught organizations to be adaptable to change, innovative, and quick to act. As COVID-19 disturbed their way of working, the need for legacy systems to be replaced by digital ones reached organizations at dizzying speed.
Aside from digital transformation, the last 18 months have most certainly exposed several critical flaws in the business model. To stay competitive in the market for skilled employees, companies may need to change the way they hire or maybe the culture has to be revamped as it transitions to a mixed work paradigm.
Whatever the situation, the pace of change is accelerating, so businesses should determine how they will lead their organizations through it. Here are three common misconceptions concerning change management, as well as how to address them:
To begin, change management necessitates a proper plan
Many organizations were trapped in the planning trap prior to COVID-19. In principle, the idea of writing and revising change plans until they find a solution that works for everyone is excellent, but in practice, it can leave firms unprepared.
Rather than sketching out a step-by-step process, companies should ensure that the leadership team is on the same page about the desired goals. Determine what is necessary to retain the integrity of the company’s identity as it grows. A macro-level strategy allows for flexibility and adaptation, which are two things that even the best-laid plans require.
When it comes to change, the first step is always the most difficult. Move forth with the understanding that discomfort is unavoidable. Perfect is the enemy of good in change management.
Only from the top down does change occur
While it is critical that the C-suite is on board with the organization’s aims and objectives, it is impossible to force adoption without employee buy-in. Natural resistance is common in most organizations that have operated in the same way for decades.
Miscommunication is one of the most significant impediments to change. Businesses should involve their employees as early as feasible in the transition process. Inform them of the expected timeline, what they will be asked to do, and how it will affect their workflow. They will most likely be more willing to cooperate if they are able to quantify the impact of the change.
Businesses should consider how to include employees at the managerial level in the change leadership fold. Managers can be a crucial bridge between employees to develop trust and support for their efforts. This is more so if the organization is so large that lower-level employees rarely have face time with executive leadership.
The most successful method is to use a traditional approach
A typical approach to change can elicit feelings of anxiety, tension, and dread, causing teams to go into survival mode and become resistant to change. A change philosophy that aims to evoke feelings of enthusiasm and opportunity, on the other hand, can evoke a positive response from the organization.
Budgets and timeframes are non-negotiable in the traditional approach to change, which can add stress to the team’s already overburdened schedules. When companies bombard their staff with report after report outlining how far they still have to go, transformation can appear far more intimidating. Businesses leaders should be selective about what they share with their team while mitigating uncertainty.