Although change can be a good thing, it often makes employees uncomfortable. They may be concerned about potential job losses, a new manager, a restructured team, layoffs, or reduced pay or benefits. This is why change management is so critical for team leaders.
As a leader, you set the tone for your team. Effective communication and change management are paramount to your role. Providing regular updates helps your employees understand, navigate, and accept the change.
Apply these change management techniques with your team to maximize success.
Share a detailed plan to implement the change.
- Include why, when, and how the change will occur.
- Document the tasks to reach the desired outcome.
- Outline any new or changing employee responsibilities and a timeline for when they begin.
- Develop responses to potential employee concerns.
Provide as much information as possible about the change. This helps your employees feel more comfortable.
- Let your employees know the changes will happen in phases.
- Include how the changes will impact your team.
Remain as truthful as possible when talking with your employees. This promotes trust among your team.
Honesty is especially important if the change is in response to difficult circumstances or will lead to adverse short-term outcomes.
- Present the information in an objective manner.
- Share realistic outcomes.
- Remain optimistic while acknowledging potential drawbacks and challenges.
Maintain open lines of communication with your employees.
- Explain why the change is being implemented.
- Share what the change will look like.
- Answer employee questions.
- Make yourself available to privately address concerns.
Discuss where your company has been, is now, and will be going.
- Talk about the company’s history and how it impacts the change being implemented.
- Share how the change will affect the company’s future.
- Demonstrate the thought and strategy used to create the change.
- Show how the change fits with the business model your employees are used to.
If the change involves technology or processes, let your employees know they will receive training on it.
- Clarify that your team will receive adequate support to learn the new way of doing things.
- Emphasize that your employees will gain the skills and experience needed to move forward with the organization.
If possible, ask your employees to provide feedback on the change.
- Your employees appreciate having their voices heard.
- You can gain ideas, viewpoints, and impacts you may not have considered.
Remind your employees that the change will take place in phases. This provides time for your employees to adapt.
- You can proactively address questions and issues.
- Your team can learn new ways of doing things.
Maintain oversight of the change implementation. Ensure things go smoothly and lead to success.
- Define your metrics for success.
- Monitor your metrics to stay on track.
- Look for potential problems.
- Resolve issues as quickly as possible.
- Regularly touch base with key stakeholders to gain feedback.
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