Companies must evolve in order to become better and more successful. Of course, change can be difficult. This is particularly true when the change takes place throughout an entire company. Don’t let that stop you! Simply learn how to go through those changes productively. Here are some tips for change management for your business’s next big change.
1. Create a plan
Large scale change in a company cannot be completed overnight. It requires extensive planning. Get started right away and involve all executives in the planning process. Work together to create a plan so that the change can be executed in a uniform manner. Ensure that all management is on the same page so that they can answer all questions with the same answers. Finally, set realistic goals for when the change should be completed.
2. Enable communication
You will need to allow all management and employees the ability to speak up if they have a question. There are bound to be questions that you didn’t think of during the planning phases. You’ll want to hear about any questions or problems as soon as they come up. You may even consider sending regular emails with any updates for the entire company.
3. Gain support
Before you go through with any large-scale changes, you need to get the support of the people who are invested in your business. Literally. Gather support from your shareholders. If they don’t agree with the idea, they may sell their shares and leave your company in a worse position than before.
You also want support from your employees. In order to do this, explain to them why your company will be going through the change and offer support throughout the process.
4. Create metrics and goals
Every change should be analyzed for success. In order to do this, you need to be clear about what things need to happen in order for the change to have been a success. Create quantifiable metrics so that you can put numbers to the data instead of vague statements. Assess the data immediately after the change and again about a month later to see if the data has changed at all. Things do take time, after all.
5. Plan for resistance
Naturally, some people will not be on board with the change. It’s important to acknowledge these points and give them the opportunity to express themselves, especially in the early stages. Always be empathetic to any struggles that may occur during the change.
After you implement change in your company, be sure to ask employees, managers, and stockholders how they feel the change went. Send out anonymous surveys in all departments. Ask them what worked well, what could be improved on, and ask for any input. Keeping it anonymous allows people to give their honest input without fear of repercussion. Use this information to help facilitate the next change that you make.
After you successfully make a change in your company, you hope that it goes well. Analyze the transition and the results. If it did go smoothly and lead to success, celebrate! Announce how well the change worked for the company (and the employees). You can even throw a small party to thank people for their help throughout the process and give them lunch or donuts.
Running a company is difficult when things are going smoothly. During a change, it can be especially difficult. Summon every ounce of patience you have and go through the change with a positive attitude. Change must occur to give you and your employees the opportunity to grow even more than you already have.