Organisational change deals with alterations or changes that alter a major component of the organisation, such as infrastructure, internal processes, or culture. By leveraging change to introduce a successful solution, typically three major phrases are touched on: preparation, implementation, and follow-through.
When implemented in the right way, change management can bring significant benefits. For instance, change management reduces the likelihood of a new system being rejected by an organisation. Keep in mind, however, that it does not by itself lower costs or boost sales. Instead, this process increases the teamwork needed for the organisation to accept the change and operate at the highest possible level.
Organisational change management is required whenever your organisation implements a program that impacts how your operation runs on a day-to-day basis. For instance, when something changes, such as:
The content that workers produce
Many roles call upon workers to carry out regular tasks across the week. A marketing agency, for example, needs to meet daily, weekly, monthly and annual targets by completing certain activities. The tools used to do this become familiar and second nature over time. Even minor tweaks can interfere with work processes and cause concern for team members.
The roles of each employee
People find their identity within an organisation based on what they excel at. When asked to work within a different role, they may feel uncertain and not confident. For instance, people with strong technical skills may find it difficult to manage a team of specialists under them. When someone loses direction and they no longer feel recognised for the skills that made them successful, they can easily become disgruntled.
The actual organisation
Executives and senior members of staff often debate significant changes for months prior to making a decision, meaning everyone involved in the conversation will understand the impact of change on a deeper level. Regardless of whether they agree with the direction being taken, they have the time to accept and support the new change or to leave in their own time. The people not included in these conversations, alternatively, do not have the luxury of this insight. As a result, these individuals have less time to prepare for planned change and may in turn decide to leave mid-way through the change process, making everything more difficult to manage.
In order for change management to be successful, a number of things need to be accounted for:
The right executive sponsor
The organisational change management sponsor needs to develop the case for change and obtain the relevant resources. This is dependent on the sponsor having the support of the CEO to clearly define that this is important.
Key to the process is the sponsor understanding the reason for change. This is because they need to have a thorough discussion about the challenges that brought about the need for different ways of functioning. This person should have the confidence to confront skeptics by using details to support the chosen approach. They should also provide reasons as to why alternatives were rejected.
The sponsor needs to appreciate the effect that change will have on team members. This involves communicating honestly and treating everyone fairly and with respect. It is important to take the time to listen and empathise with people who disagree with the change, rather than just relaying the facts. If someone is to be reassigned or terminated, sponsors need to know what this process will look like and how people will be treated. They should provide an explanation regarding why the change was required, and facilitate a smooth transition for anyone whose job has been transformed.
Cultural willingness to change
It’s natural for an organisation to push back against change to some level, but moving with the times and adopting flexibility is key to positive growth. With this in mind, smart change management teams utilise the emotional energy of an organisation. They share company stories, language and behaviour to highlight the aspects of current culture that match with the scheduled change. These teams reward actions that they want to encourage by recognising individuals that demonstrate these behaviours publicly. It’s vital to use every opportunity to reinforce the way the change helps the enterprise.
Individual willingness to change
Individual team members need to be prepared to study new information and take on new behaviours and approaches. This can present challenges, as most people find comfort in the status quo. However, the majority will accept changes that improve the work culture and their job.
Praise and consequences
It’s important that significant changes are reinforced through the use of rewards and consequences. For instance, personalised performance plans with specific, easily-tracked results need to be applied to strengthen the desired future state of the organisation. Those that reach their objectives need to be rewarded and those that fail to do so should face respective consequences.
Typically, on one end of the spectrum, you’ll find organisational change that speaks to modesty, while on the other end, managers will implement plans for vast change, The two most common types of organisational change are: adaptive changes and transformational changes.
Small, incremental changes that must evolve over time are typically referred to as adaptive changes. These minor modifications are fine-tuned to refine processes, such as upgrading and operating systems or implementing weekly meetings to adapt to the new work from home arrangements.
These changes have a larger scope and often involve a shift in strategy, team structure, or business processes. Transformational changes could involve culture change, which can effectively transform the way employees interact. Or it may be deploying a completely new platform, such as CRM software.
Organisational change is necessary for businesses to grow and succeed, and can’t really be avoided. By driving successful adoption and change, employees can understand and commit to the shift, working effectively to implement the change needed to transform the organisation. Without organisational change, companies face lower employee morale, slower skill development, and flawed processes. Ultimately, a botched change management plan can lead to the failure of an organisation.
Leadership development is a crucial step in organisational change. As a leader, it’s important to outline the goals and look at the bigger picture to articulate high-level change. Managers should be concentrated on implementing change by determining and determining the steps that need to be taken in order to achieve structural transformation.
Organisational change is a common hurdle leaders have to overcome, however, it can sometimes be challenging to develop a plan of action for how to achieve it. Our team of accomplished leaders in business and sport can help your organisation maximise your organisational change. Get in touch with the team at Performance by Design today.
Organisational change management is a framework used for managing the impact of new processes within an organisation. This can include structural changes, cultural changes and changes to day-to-day operation. A systematic approach to OCM is advantageous when change requires people throughout an organisation to learn new behaviors and skills.
The 7 R’s of change are:
For successful change implementation in organisations, these are four vital interrelated components: