How to Effectively Manage Change in Your Organization
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Change happens in every organization and it can range from a small departmental change to full organization restructuring. Change of any kind can cause a lot of unrest and even distress to employees, so it is important to manage it carefully.
With Prosci's Global Survey revealing that as many as 86% of change leaders expect there to be change initiatives in their organization over the next two years, it looks like HR will have a lot of work on their hands. HR needs to use their strong leadership skills for the change management process to ensure it is as efficient as possible.
These are some steps HR leaders can take to manage organizational change:
Define the change
If a change is happening in an organization, it is important to define what the change is, the reasons for the change and the potential benefits/risks. This is a vital step in the change management process which is often missed out by businesses and is necessary for managing the change effectively.
Communicate with employees
One of the biggest downfalls during the change management process is ineffective communication with employees and this can potentially cause a lot of issues. It is important that HR leaders communicate with employees as early as possible before the change happens, as this can prevent informal negative speculation. No matter what the change is, whether negative or positive, it is important to keep communication open and allow employees to provide feedback. If employees feel involved in the change, they will be much more willing to accept it. You can do this by communicating, asking for feedback and delegating tasks to them.
Stick to your plans
The change process should involve specific actions to ensure it is successful and you must stick to your plans if you want staff to trust you. If you keep changing plans or you make promises to your employees which you don’t keep, you will lose credibility. One of the major changes for organizations is restructuring, which often leads to redundancies. Companies sometimes promise employees they won’t lose their job, even when they know it is inevitable. This kind of broken promise can be seriously damaging to the reputation of the business.
No matter what the change is, it is important that employees are trained to be able to manage it effectively. If the change involves a restructuring, for example, it is important that employees are trained to be able to hand the restructuring in the most appropriate way. They may need to be trained on how to speak to customers about the restructuring and there may be a change to processes. Training may be informal on a one to one basis or it may be formal classroom/online training.
If you’d like to learn more about managing change effectively, you may want to try one of our SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP courses, which are available for HR professionals at all levels.