How To Manage Change In Your Business

Everybody knows that modern business is fast-paced. Change is necessary to survive. Even giant enterprises have become extinct when they tried to rely only on past achievements.
Despite the obvious need, resistance to change is always present and the wise manager or entrepreneur must know the right techniques to bring change without harming the business. To successfully make changes in your company, there are many things to consider. Below are some of the most important things to keep in mind:
Carefully choose what changes to prioritize. There are so many things that could be improved despite limited time and resources. You must set priorities or else you would accomplish little and expend too much effort. Spending too much time on an unimportant aspect might also reveal a personal agenda.
Understand why people fear change. In making changes, try to foresee how this would affect the people involved. Knowing the precise issues that concern each person would be an invaluable guide to making people more welcome of the change.
Involve stakeholders in the change process. Studies have shown that even suboptimal solutions are often more effective if all parties had a role in the formulation of the solution. Part of the problem in trying to bring the parties to be active participants is the lack of trust. This must first be overcome or you will get only lukewarm support at best.
Talk to both groups and individuals. In getting feedback and support, you will discover that you will get different information from people and from groups. Some issues are better discussed one-on-one, especially if there may be confidential matters. Generally, it is easier to get agreement when speaking with an individual, but the process is more time-consuming.
Anticipate your people’s reactions to the planned changes. Especially in situations wherein there would be reduction in privileges, it is only reasonable to expect antagonism. Safeguards should be instituted so that the change process will be sustained. Also, if people see that management is prepared, there is less motivation for hostile actions.
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*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. C-6, Sunday, March 16, 2014. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.