Top 3 Tips for avoiding resistance to change in your organization

January 14, 2016 | Toronto
Contributed by Linda Morgan, MA, HSDP, President of The Clic Effect Inc.
Stubborn as a mule. Boys on a beach try to coax a recalcitrant animal into action. Photograph, early 1900's. --- Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

Image by © Bettmann/CORBIS

Change is happening faster than ever before. On average, people are dealing with 5-7 change initiatives in their personal and professional lives at one time. Despite this increased amount of change, research shows we are not getting better at managing change – with more than 70 per cent of change initiatives failing. So how do you stay ahead of the curve and avoid failure?

You must first overcome resistance to change. Here are my Top 3 Tips to avoid resistance to change and increase your chances for success:

1. Engage Your Team at the Decision-Making Phase

One of the biggest factors that can create resistance to change is an employee feeling like they were not involved in the decision-making process for why the change is happening. Often, a change initiative is decided behind closed doors and presented to a team. If you want to avoid resistance to the new initiative, get your team involved. Ask them to voice their opinions, suggestions, and brainstorm ideas on what the best way to move forward is. You will be surprised at your response rate!

2. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate!

Transparency is paramount in successful change initiatives. When employees believe they don’t have all of the information about the change and have unanswered questions, they fill in these gaps with gossip, rumours and false information. If you don’t have the answers, communicate just that. Show some vulnerability and honesty. Provide opportunities for them to voice their concerns and questions. It will go a long way to quash misconceptions.

3. Set Clear Goals, Roles and Responsibilities

Just like any successful project, the key is to set clear expectations. If employees aren’t aware of what their role is or what success looks like, how are they supposed to contribute to the success of implementing change? Develop a full project plan and define what success looks like for the initiative, and who is responsible for the different action items of the plan.

While these tips might seem like no-brainers when it comes to implementing change and avoiding resistance, the proof is in the stats-then why are so many people failing at change? Join me on January 19 when I will present a framework to help you successfully implement your next change initiative.

Linda Morgan

Linda Morgan is a consummate professional focused on tackling real organizational issues head-on with a results-oriented focus. She is an expert in change management, leadership development, executive coaching, and employee engagement. With over 15 years of human resources experience across multiple industries, she brings clients a unique consultative approach: Curiosity, Learn, Inspire, Compassion: CLIC and everything fits into place!

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