Linda Burke of Newton HR sets out the three key steps that will help you guide your staff through any changes.
In today’s tough economic climate, change has become an important necessity. As such, it is key that both staff and their managers understand exactly why change is happening, and how it will take place.
The word “change” can trigger feelings of uncertainty - many of which centre around job security as well as concerns regarding increases in workload and the impact on patient care. Most people tend to feel insecure, overwhelmed and, as a result, will resist that change to a greater or lesser extent.
How you, as a manager, plan, communicate and deliver change will affect its overall success. Helping your team to understand the answers to the many why, what, when, how and who questions will pay significant dividends.
Putting yourself in a position to be able to competently answer the why, what, when, who and why questions will give you confidence and clarity in the decision, building the plan and communication strategy, and engaging and communicating with your team.
How to deal with change
Step 1 - Plan
Understand why change is happening:
● What are you trying to achieve?
● What is the impact on your direction?
● What does the change mean for you and your team?
What are the key aspects?
Analyse the aspects of change:
● What has to be done and what will be done differently?
● How ready are you for the change?
● Who else needs to be involved?
When will it happen?
● What are you going to tell people?
● How are you going to tell them?
● How will they react and do you have the answers to key questions?
Who is involved?
● Who is affected? How will staff and teams react? What will concerns be?
● Who do you need to engage outside of the team?
Have you planned appropriately?
Fine tune the plan:
● Do you have all the information?
● Do you have all the answers?
● Can you communicate the plan?
Step 2 - Communication
● Be clear about change and impact
● Explain what will be done differently
● Make time for staff and resolve issues quickly
Step 3 - Deliver
Implementing the plan will take longer than you think
● Monitor and review progress
● Look for unexpected side effects and act, immediately if necessary
● Keep your team motivated