Consultation with everyone involved is paramount. If change is forced on people problems are likely to arise. Any change must be realistic, achievable and measurable.
Here are a series of questions that must be considered at a personal or at an organisational level before beginning any process of change:
The Reasons for Change need to be Understood
Change should not be sold to people. Selling involves fulfilling someone’s needs. The need for change is yours, not theirs. People can see through this technique and it is a sure way to destroy any trust. This is the reason why so many organisations fail to with the hearts of their people as they go through a change programme. People can see and agreed with the logic but, if they are not communicated with and consulted with in the appropriate way, they will feel let down and emotions will take over. At best they will go along with it; at worst they will fight voraciously against it and probably leave the organisation atthe first opportunity.
Instead, change needs to be understood and managed in a way that people can cope with it effectively. Change can be unsettling.
People affected by the change need to agree with, or at least understand, the reason for change. They should have the chance to decide how the change will be managed and to be involved in the planning and implementation of the change, as far as possible.
Face-to-face communication is the best way to handle sensitive aspects of organisational change management. Email, text messages and written notices are not the way to convey and develop understanding. Every so often we hear reports of how people have been informed about major change in inappropriate ways, such as people being told that they have lost their job by text message or through Twitter.
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