In today’s working environment, change is inevitable. The Covid-10 pandemic has massively impacted business operations, but many more factors have led to such a dynamic business landscape.
The rapid advancements in technology, communication challenges, economic cycles, and shifts in the competitive arena are some of the most influential factors that make it imperative for companies to change. This change can take various forms: implementing up-to-date technology in the workplace, focusing on employees’ mental health, installing a safety culture, etc.
Periods of change can be stressful, but they are necessary. Unfortunately, not all workers can accommodate this, and many even refuse to embrace it. But do not get discouraged – it is nobody’s fault. With the pace at which the world is evolving, it is only normal for people to be confused and overwhelmed. Change has to be implemented with baby steps and, most importantly, with the proper measures.
Thus, if you are looking for ways to help your team accept change, no matter in what form, you have come to the right place. Keep scrolling to find the key to making your employees embrace change.
With every change, explain the “why.”
The first and most important step is to increase employee trust. In order to do this, you need to communicate openly and be honest. Therefore, every time you plan a change, major or minor, do not forget to be transparent and explain why this change is so critical. You must be able to clearly articulate what you are planning for your businesses and accept feedback from other managers and employees. Start by describing the actual situation and why you believe it is not working. And do not be afraid to admit mistakes. People will be more emotionally involved in your cause if they learn the rationale behind it. Authenticity and transparency are highly appreciated, so spill it out without fearing someone would not understand your point.
Throughout the change initiative, it would also be helpful to schedule meetings with workers to debate the process and come to a decision together. Many employers tend not to keep employees in the loop without realizing that this is one of the reasons they often refuse to accommodate change. So, always discuss what the improvement is about and, most importantly, why it is needed.
Listen – and acknowledge – the feedback
Now that we have clarified the importance of including the team in crucial business meetings, we learn that it is also essential to listen to their voice. You never know when a worker comes up with a bright new idea that can help you in the change process. Moreover, receiving their feedback will give them a sense of purpose. When employees see interest in their opinions, they will most probably do their best to accomplish their duties and thus be more productive. At this point, everyone is accountable, not only managers, so employees will become more responsible when sharing opinions, ideas, or suggestions.
Provide adequate training
More often than not, training is required, no matter the organization. Whether you introduce a new operating system, software, process, or an overhaul in customer service, employees need to be thoroughly trained to understand that technology and use it. Besides, it is your legal obligation to train your team so that in the event of an accident, you have proof that you are not liable for the incident. Lean training is necessary not only at the beginning of your employees’ journey within your company but also when a change is to be implemented. Thus, ensure you, mentor, educate, and provide them with proper training to seamlessly accommodate change and ease into whatever is going to be improved. If you think you are not prepared to train your workers by yourself, you can also get in touch with expert trainers who will approach the situation professionally. Lean training specialists, for example, are reputable for supporting individuals and companies in their pursuit to enhance processes unceasingly. So, if you are looking for state-of-the-art services, consider contacting professional trainers.
Use emotional intelligence
You may be wondering what emotions have to do with intelligence. Well, the bestseller author Daniel Goleman says a lot in his “Emotional Intelligence” book. There is nothing wrong with demonstrating empathy and compassion towards your employees, and this should be emphasized more. People have gone through numerous challenges lately, and now more than ever, it is time to support each other. The business landscape is not an exception, too – workers would feel much more valued if treated with compassion, discipline, and transparency and thus are more likely to accept innovation or any development you plan for your business.
Support worker resilience and workplace relationships
One of the most critical aspects most employers often ignore is keeping their team’s optimism and enthusiasm alive. How would it be for people to only sit at a desk and do their job all day long? Overwhelming. No one says that you should reduce work hours but think instead of fostering a sense of belonging in the working environment. The best way to do that is to invest in team-building activities to help your employees break with everyday life and socialize. This aspect has long been discounted, but now more than ever, it needs to be reinforced, as the Covid-19 pandemic has shaken what once was known as social life.
Also, consider investing in health and wellness programs to help workers cope with new ways of working and daily stress. Mental health has become the #1 priority among employees who are now more interested in finding a job that can support their emotional needs. More than that, a recent survey shows that almost half of employees would quit their jobs if they lacked clearly defined work-life boundaries.
That being said, prioritizing mental health in the workplace is one of the most important steps in motivating employees to embrace change. And, to be honest, it is not that hard to navigate the potential limits and act upon their concerns since there are so many activities you can enroll them in. From indoor team-building activities to outdoor excursions, the possibilities are countless; all you need is to want that.
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