How to Prepare Employees for Change

Change is a double-edged sword. As a leader, you must appreciate the need to constantly move forward, to adapt to new circumstances and create new opportunities. While alterations are exciting and fresh, there are challenges involved that you must address before putting new initiatives in place. Change disrupts the known comfort level and, no matter how positive it is, there will likely be some backlash. Learn how to prepare employees for changes so they will embrace new methods, ideas and cultural adaptations that will lead to success for everyone.

Share Your Vision: When introducing something new, it is important to give your employees a clear, definite picture of what the change will bring. Transmit a vision to them that shows the benefits of the novel enterprise. Break it down into the pros and cons, and illustrate why the advantages overwhelm the downside. Once your staff understands why the company needs to change, they are better prepared to accept it and do the work needed to make it happen. 

Invite Discussion: It is daunting to your team when you state something is going to happen when they have been kept out of the loop. Address the change before it is a “done deal” with discussions beforehand. Allow your employees to give input and ideas about a proposal before you mandate it. Talking about it in detail relieves much of the stress they might otherwise bottle up. The opportunity to speak up and be part of the process not only empowers staff members but gives you additional perspectives that can help you modify the idea for the better.

Create Steps: Fear is the greatest obstacle to change. When something will be different, people wonder apprehensively about when it will happen and what the transition entails. To combat this worry about unknown factors, the savvy manager can ease stress by composing a list of clear steps regarding the project. When employees see exactly how you will conduct the change, from start the finish, they will get on board quickly.

Change, major or minor, is always necessary in an evolving business. Take care to explore its ramifications on your staff so you can use this empathy to properly prepare them for the future.