“Change often strikes a chord of fear in an organization” wrote The Business Journals’ Kathy Close in her recent article titled ‘Why a formal game plan is critical for change management initiatives’. Change can indeed seem daunting. But is it really change itself that people are afraid of, or rather the uncertainty it brings?
Fearing the unknown is understandable, but if you prepare for your change initiative by getting to know your organization inside-out and crafting a solid plan, you have nothing to worry about.
Change initiatives, in general, are often met with resistance from employees. However, as Hiske den Boer, Business Unit Director of OrgMapper, said in her latest OrgMapper | Insights video: employee resistance is often not against the change itself, but the way it is implemented.
Resistance, if neglected, can bear serious consequences, as it may lead to poor morale, decreased efficiency and, in general, a disruptive work environment.
<figcaption class="wp-caption-text">Source: LinkedIn</figcaption></figure>
In order to make sure a change initiative is successful, organizations tend to follow the common change management pattern of Prepare, Manage, Reinforce, yet an overwhelming majority of change projects still fail.
So where does it all go wrong?
As written by Ms Close, the Preparation phase is key, as it is the part when organizations ask themselves the following:
- Where are we now?
- Where are we headed?
- What do we want to achieve?
Asking the right questions is essential, but more often than not corporate answers will not be enough. You will need to know individual opinions, because at the end of the day managing change comes down to dealing with social connections.
By mapping an organization’s informal networks you can identify key employees best positioned and most motivated to advocate your vision and mobilize their peers to participate in and accept your initiatives. Bringing these influencers on board at an early stage will ensure minimal employee resistance and a smooth and successful transition.
Are you interested in decreasing employee resistance via influencer identification and network-based organizational diagnostics? Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can show you more.