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Managing change in the workplace

PEOPLE resist change for a variety of reasons. Fear of the unknown and a desire to stay in their comfort zone are a couple of the reasons that people resist change. The more people are informed about pending changes, the less resistance you will meet. When people aren’t informed they speculate, and this can lead to half-truths, distortions, uninformed perceptions and rumour mongering. Here is a checklist to explore how well change is managed within your team. As you review the list, answer these questions: What needs to happen? What could we do better? • All people to be affected by the change are identified. • The background and reasons for the change are explained. • The positives and negatives of the change being made are identified and explored. • We compare how the benefits of the change will outweigh the cost of the change. • People who provide the service/product are involved in the planning phase and not just the implementation phase. • The roles of all team members in relation to the changes are agreed. • The consequences for all of us if we do not make the changes are explored. • We gain agreement as to why the changes are necessary. • The likely impediments to implementing the changes are identified and resolved. • The priorities of key tasks are re-negotiated to accommodate the required changes. • Practical steps or required behaviours to implement the change are agreed. • Other areas are informed of the changes and the reasons behind them, where appropriate. • We demonstrate support for the intended change. • We ensure adequate resources and budget are available to support the changes. • We provide responses to questions/issues of concern about the proposed changes. • We renegotiate the priorities of other tasks to accommodate the change. • A strategy and timetable including key behaviours/actions for the implementation of the change using input from those affected is developed. • The priority of key behaviours/actions is determined before implementation. • Training and coaching in the competencies required to implement the change are applied and evaluated for application in the workplace. • We follow through on implementation of the changes. • The impact of the change is reviewed on a regular basis. • Senior management do what needs doing to help us implement the required changes.

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