“Change is the only constant” – Heraclitus, the Greek philosopher.
Change, when poorly managed, can lead to unnecessary stress and frustration. Effective planning and execution of change is therefore critical to maintain happiness and inner peace for all affected by it.
Always remember that “Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything” – George Bernard Shaw.
You can have a smoother change journey with less stress and resistance by applying the Kurt Lewin’s Model and the John Kotter’s 8 Steps Model for change management.
(i) Unfreeze: Create and Communicate the Need for Change
- Common Understanding: People require to see the need for change, in order to support it. This step is required to change existing attitudes and behaviour(s). Getting this step wrong may lead to large scale resistance and push-back for the proposed change.
- Clear Communication: Be clear about what the change(s) will be, why it is necessary and how it will be achieved. It will also help to stop and clear up any rumors that may have been spread.
- Address Concerns: Understand and manage the concerns raised and challenges communicated in order to get the teams buy-in. Do NOT bulldoze using authority – pulling rank will do more damage to the team than good.
(ii) Change: Prepare/Train for Change
- Training: Ensure all affected persons are trained and equipped for the change especially if the change involves adding a new function, responsibility or duty to the team.
- Involvement: Get everyone involved in the change process in order to get the insights and contributions of the subject matter experts.
- Flexibility: Be Flexible and Track the Execution – not all scenarios can be planned for. Be flexible and ready to modify or update the current plan to account for any unforeseen events.
- Be Realistic: Set realistic and achievable goals/milestones for the change journey. Celebrated certain milestones in order to reinforce and fortify the positive changes in attitudes and/or behaviour(s).
(iii) Refreeze: Reinforce the Change(s)
- Be Consistent: Reinforce the change(s) by integrating the changes into a system i.e. organisational policies and procedures and the workplace culture. Consistency is key to achieve permanent change.
Change is inevitable, the better you handle it – the greater your chances are for success, progression and growth.
If you’re struggling to effect change, our professional coaches and counselors can help you to overcome your barriers from the comfort of your home/office through video calling sessions. Alternatively, take our full online course “Change Management”. For more information, go to https://icwsa.com/course/change-management/
© Institute of Competency and Wellness (ICW), 2017