Change Management – Avoiding Fear

22 Aug

The sky flashed overhead momentarily revealing the horrors of our surroundings. Trees were bending in the wind to the point of breaking and for those brief seconds we could see towering clouds in every shade of purple and green. We were then plunged back into utter darkness, our only flashlight long since dead. Feelings of helplessness washed over us as we considered our situation. Did the organization put us in this position intentionally, or did they just not care?!?!

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It may sound overly dramatic, but change can be a daunting endeavour for many people in your organization. And change that places people ‘in the dark’ can quickly manifest feelings similar to those of being in peril. People will not willingly go into ‘the dark’, nor should it be asked of them. Successful change management doesn’t focus on the change but rather the people who have to make the change. Define the change in terms of people impacts. Meet with staff and find out what concerns they have and plan to address concerns in a timely fashion. Communicate often both as a group and with individuals. Map out the change together, breaking the change into steps or phases so people can gauge progress. Through engagement, transparency and communication, you can lead people through change while avoiding fear of the unknown.

Robert Ferguson
www.thefocusedmanager.com

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