Learn to identify why people are resistant to change and ways to lead in an era of constant change.
- We leaders are a hopeful lot, we tend to wait way too long to address change and help others adapt to change. And then when we perceive or observe resistance among our team, we have to sell that change to get everyone on board. Why do people resist change in the first place? Well they might believe the change is unnecessary or will make things worse. They may not trust the people leading the change effort, they may be highly invested in the current way of doing work or perhaps they expect more work as a result of the change. When we know these reasons we're better able to apply strategies and tools to help our people overcome and embrace change. One of those tools I recommend is ADKAR. Which stands for awareness, desire, knowledge, ability, and reinforce. Awareness is explaining the reasons for change. This is about creating your organization's why. And this has to be done early and often. Connect people to the real purpose of the organization. To ensure your team has awareness, ask them to describe the business customer or competitor issues that created the need for change. Desire is creating a climate where your team wants to participate in the change. They know they have a voice and that the leaders are really listening and have allowed for time in the schedule to make on the spot changes to accommodate input. We know that people support what they help create and our aim is to help people want to change. To check desire, ask your team about the pros and cons of the change to get a reading on their desire to change. Knowledge is all about how to change. Ensure you're providing the tools people need based on where they're at. When it comes to empowering others to act on the vision, ask your team what skills and knowledge are required to support the change and any gaps that may be addressed before, during, or after the change. With regard to addressing the knowledge gaps, you have the ability to implement the change at a standard. Are there any barriers or obstacles that may inhibit your ability? Reinforcing is what's needed to make the change stick. Hitting or missing the goals of change should result in a consequence, reinforcing or correcting. And a big part of success is establishing a sense of urgency and planning for and creating short-term wins. Once this occurs, then it's about consolidating improvement and producing still more change and institutionalizing new approaches. To foster adaptability, reduce the resistance and create a fluid climate for rapid change. It's up to you to ensure your team has the tools it needs to succeed.