CAREER DEVELOPMENT / FEB. 04, 2015
version 4, draft 4

5 Ways to Prepare for Company Changes

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Change is not easy, and it is for this reason that it is usually resisted. Organizations implement change to improve their productivity and competitiveness. However, if this change is not communicated and understood by all those involved, a problem is bound to crop up. All the concerns likely to be raised regarding this change need to be addressed to avoid resistance. The idea is for the change to move you to a better place as an organization, and everyone needs to be on board for this to happen.

#1 Personal Concern

Very predictably, change will make people think about their personal gain or loss. Every person, in a company making changes, needs to have their personal concerns addressed. Employees are concerned about their ability to implement the change required, learning new skills, losing their job and what is expected of them. If these concerns are not dealt with, they may hinder the change, and the targeted outcome may not be realized.

#2 Ensure there is no Communication Breakdown

Communication about the change should be clear. The employer will want to explain why the change is a good idea, and why the organization is taking that direction. Employees should not be told the change is good until they have understood it. The information should be shared in a simple way. Not communicating clearly will result in people getting the wrong information and communicating it. Putting the information out clearly, allows employees to ask the relevant questions that help them welcome the changes.

#3 Plan

There should be a plan to implement the change. This will be easy once the idea has been communicated effectively, understood and accepted. Planning involves sharing information on how the change has been tested and where to go for problems that may arise in its implementation. It gives a schedule of what is done first, second and so on. How the details are managed by the different people involved and what happens if the plan does not work out. Planning gives a broad picture of what is expected, the help needed, the length of time and how the organizational structure will change

#4 Sell the Change

People will be interested in the impact the change will make. Is it relevant and is it going to pay off soon or will it take more time. They will want answers. It is important to have a clear focus on the merits and let them be felt even before they are realized. The change will be anticipated if you share the early successes you make, and prove that the change is making a positive impact.

#5 Pool Resources

Once it is observed that the change is working as planned, more energy is put in. Bigger focus should be put on coordinating and cooperating with other people to move faster. Getting everyone on board will be easy since the change is seen to be making a difference.

Leaders during this process needs to be able to detect concerns of any kind and respond appropriately. This way energy is refocused on what needs to be done and people are ready for continuous improvement.

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