Change, even on a good day, is difficult. If it wasn’t I’d be wearing a size 6 suit.
Change in the workplace is no easier. As companies look to reinvent themselves to meet the challenges of the future, change is inevitable. Whether expanding a business, restructuring an offering or just improving an existing product, it will require doing things differently. It seems simple enough. Offer up a good idea and everyone will jump on board. But as we all know, it doesn’t work that way.
In many cases, change may require employees to think differently, act differently and do things differently. That’s huge. Consider that you have been doing things the same way for years and have been successful doing it. All of a sudden, it’s time to “change the way you work.” Yikes. What’s next? What if I can’t do it the new way? How will I know what to do next? At this point, change becomes emotional.
Emotion is a powerful thing. On the upside, it reveals itself as passion or drive for success that can serve as a catalyst for positive change. At the same time, you cannot ignore the potential downside that emotions can bring. Fear, anger, resentment and frustration. These emotions are also very powerful.
Over the years I have seen change done well and I have witnessed disasters. Every situation is unique and each person is different. That makes change personal. Unfortunately, there’s no canned recipe, formula or solution.
Leading successful change requires trust, empathy and the ability to understand the people side of change. If you are facing challenges, maybe it’s time to get personal.