In an ideal world, we'd have all the answers before engaging with employees in a crisis, but the truth is that getting the information you want and need could take days or even weeks.
FREMONT, CA: Since the pandemic outbreak, there has been constant upheaval in all parts of our life, including how we conduct business. Executives across industries are aggressively driving change agendas to keep employees and customers engaged in a rapidly morphing world from bricks and mortar to bricks and clicks – from CIOs implementing new digital technologies at a dizzying pace to CFOs looking to fast-track new products and services to speed economic recovery.
Here are four reasons why change management fail:
Forgetting the end-user
One of the most typical mistakes is failing to consider your essential end-users, internal and external stakeholders when it comes to crisis response. Make a concentrated effort to fully understand your stakeholder groups — their requirements, expectations, pain areas, and preparedness for change – while developing any change or transformation process. A plan that meets your end-users will have a better chance of gaining their support and successfully guiding them through the upcoming changes.
Sacrificing strategy for speed
Although we can all agree that quick and timely action is critical to a successful change attempt, don't let speed overshadow the plan. Instead, take time to establish a sound strategy that specifies why change is needed, what is changing, who will be affected and how, when transitions will occur, what dangers and obstacles to expect, and how you will assess results and identify progress before rushing to launch your change endeavor. It will be tough to keep everyone engaged and working in the same direction toward your goals without a well-defined change roadmap.
Communicating too little, too late
In an ideal world, we'd have all the answers before engaging with employees in a crisis, but the truth is that getting the information you want and need could take days or even weeks. Waiting too long can lead to sending out too few communications too late, and as a general rule, communicating early and often allows you to set expectations and lead with facts. Be open and honest about what you don't know and how you're going to find out. Finally, provide regular updates as new and altering details become available to assist you in keeping the conversation under control and the rumor mill at bay.
Losing the forest for the trees
Change implementation is a complex, time-consuming process that takes a lot of energy, intellectual force, strength, devotion, and sheer willpower to stay on target and focused. Don't lose sight of the larger picture - the underlying reasons for change, anticipated consequences, and how these changes will help drive strategic goals or priorities – as you try to keep track of all the specifics. Maintaining a line of sight to your overall business objectives and staying grounded in the broad picture can help you succeed every time.