Initiating changes in an organization are one of the most challenging tasks for the CEO or MD or leader but the larger the organization the changes will be more frequent. Then the changes percolate down the line to department level. Here comes the efficiency and role of a true team leader or department head or functional area leader. For brevity I refer to these designations simply as ‘Leader’.
A good leader knows how to introduce changes in an organization without disturbing the harmonious environment of an organization. Today the business processing is influenced by several technologies and each day emerging advance technology is affecting the various aspects of an organization. Some people are eager and friendly towards the changes and they accept the changes as an opportunity to learn new and perform better, but most of the people are reluctant to accept changes and they fear that the changes in an organization will harm their position in the organization. As a result they show hard resistance to any kind of changes. If the changes are technical then it is necessary to provide the desired training and skill to the employee so that they can understand the procedure and learn it.
Leaders and managers continually make efforts to accomplish successful and significant changes – it is inherent in their jobs. Some are very good at this effort (probably more than we realize), while others continually struggle and fail.
Organizational changes are unavoidable. The better people respond to change the easier it becomes for the management and the employees to go with the flow.
People resist change due to fear and ignorance. To make the change successful and cordial it is important to create awareness among the people. Fear of loss of job, fear of the unknown, peer pressure, and fear of failure that create a negative mindset among the employees and they resist changes.
Most of the changes fail due to flawed communication strategy. Conquer the barriers of communication and spread the word about upcoming changes. Follow two-way communication, allow your employees to come forward with the ideas and fear.
Before introducing changes it is necessary to inform people why changes are necessary and how beneficial it is for the growth of the organization, how it will help in improving the productivity and service.
A responsible management knows how to prepare a background before initiating change and how to develop a cordial environment for the changes.
Plan ahead: prepare a clear outline for the changes. Instead of keeping it in the curtains, make your policies known to the employees. Secrecy sows the seed of suspicion. Involve your staff and win their confidence. Every employee should know how their position will be affected by the new changes and how they have to cope with the changes.
Each and every person involved in the organization should show a willingness and commitment to make the change successful. From the top level managers to clerk all should show their commitment for following the change.
Instead of forcing people to follow changes let people come forward with their fears and opinion and solve the issues in a healthy manner, it will surely help people in accepting the change.
While introducing changes in the organization it is the responsibility of the manager to ensure that each employee involved in change strategy is playing their part with sincerity.
Acknowledgement – Evaluation and acknowledgement of the success of the change strategy at regular intervals ensures its smooth implementation.
Follow a flexible approach in each stage of a development, evaluate change strategy from time to time and introduce desired changes in the strategy for the positive outcome.
Keep a vigilant watch over the staff. Even a slightest unrest among the employees could create big problems in the future.
It is the management’s responsibility to make the procedure of change friendly and acceptable to the employees.
Those who possess the qualities that define a good leader often emerge during the stressful environment that usually accompanies change. This creates an ideal opportunity for potential leaders to display those qualities and be recognized accordingly.
Organizational change is the slow procedure, give it time to settle down and get accepted by the people rather than forcing it and harboring negativity for the changes. Create awareness among the employees, provide training to cope with the changes and make it successful.