Change is an inevitable part of any organisation’s growth. Whether your business is a start-up or has been in operation for over 30 years, they must instil change at some point to remain relevant and operate efficiently.
But when it comes to instilling change programs, it isn’t always easy to get individual teams to buy in due to the various hurdles to organisational change along the way. Studies show that over 70% of change programs actually fall flat. This is a rather concerning statistic as change programs are not only costly, but successful implementation is also essential to the longevity of the business.
In this article, we will discuss how you can encourage your team to embrace change and how you can avoid becoming part of the failed change program statistic. We’ll tell you now that it all boils down to communication. So brush off your communication skills and let’s get started.
For employees to fully embrace and accept change in the workplace, they must first completely understand what has sparked the change and what benefits it will bring to them as a team and as a business. You are much more likely to avoid resistance if teams understand the reasoning behind the change rather than viewing it as change just for the sake of it.
Make sure you plan your communication well and that you’ve addressed the “what benefits do I receive” question.
When change is afoot, you can be almost certain that questions will arise. Sometimes from left, right and centre. To ensure that organisational change is accepted, leaders must make themselves available to answer questions and keep employees’ minds at ease. Team members should be able to give feedback, voice their concerns and then be met with reassurance and support from their manager.
Team leaders aren’t the only ones that need to communicate organisational change. To gain team-wide buy-in, it is important to appoint several change advocates or ambassadors. That way, the voice of reason isn’t coming from just one person, it’s coming from multiple people, resulting in further encouragement and trust. This can be someone on your team or additional people in the wider organisation that genuinely sing the praises of the transformation.
Organisational change cannot be communicated just once. It needs to be an ongoing conversation that happens well before the change is implemented. For wider change acceptance, communication should be staggered and delivered via multiple channels including email, messaging platforms, in person, newsletters and any other communication platforms that your organisation utilises.
So although organisational change can be difficult for some to accept or embrace, there are many tactics that you can deploy to help your team along the journey. Begin with a thorough communication plan that includes all of the points mentioned above.
If you are still not exactly sure where to begin, contact the Performance By Design team. Our experts have years of experience implementing successful change programs, leaning heavily on effective communication to achieve organisational-wide acceptance.