Making change happen is a challenge for any business executive. Try these key steps to manage change correctly.
1. Make a critical judgment. Decide.
Get the facts. Through observation and fact finding, gather as much hard information as possible. Then trust your gut. Make judgments and decisions on what is not self-evident.
2. Motivate all involved.
Communicate. Sell. Each person must see how this change will benefit him or her personally. Create ownership. Incorporate suggestions and give credit for each person’s contribution.
3. Consider possible problems. Plan alternatives.
Plan B is crucial in your planning. Have alternatives for each major step so that breakdowns in supplies or personnel won’t derail the change.
You must plan for and initiate each step for the change to occur.
5. Follow up as employees adapt.
Teach each employee how to interact with and relate to the change. Ample time must be allowed for this step. Some people don’t adapt quickly. Make plans for alternative approaches if appropriate behavior is not produced within a given time.
6. Handle consequences.
You may have to fire employees or replace lost clients who cannot handle the change. In short, you have to do whatever is necessary to make the change—if it’s truly needed—a viable undertaking for the corporation.