Multinationals and giant corporations usually have in-house HR managers that are experts in change and organizational management. But when it comes to implementing change in smaller companies, they are often in need of help to guide their employees through the change process.
4 common change management pitfalls to avoid for small businesses and what are the best practices that can be followed to avoid falling for them are following:
1. Waiting too long to communicate
Many managers prefer to keep the news of significant changes away from their employees. They do this under the belief that they are protecting their workers from undue stress or preventing the workplace from disruptions. However, long delays in communication of important information can lead to spreading of rumors. This can cause distortions in the communicating process and it often leads employees to assume the most negative picture with regards to newer decisions.
The best practice would be to bring your employees into the loop as soon as the change management goals are set. Share all the relevant information with the employees and encourage them to ask questions and communicate their opinions.
2. Overwhelming staff with information
As noted in the previous point, sharing information with employees is an important aspect of good leadership as well as the change management process. However, you still need to be selective about which details you share. Furthermore, giving too many updates to your workers will most likely lead them to stop paying attention to the messages.
You should give importance to sharing the most pertinent information that would involve the most bottom-line basics. This could include considerations like when the change is taking place, what are the reasons behind it, and how will it impact the company and their jobs.
3. Failing to focus on the benefits
Even changes that have a largely positive impact on organizations are likely to cause unrest among the employees. So if you don’t focus on the benefits to the company and to individual departments and their workers, your transition phase might not be very smooth. You might also have to face hurdles in the post-implementation phase, as employees might be resistant to accept changes.
Whenever your business is entering into a rapid growth phase that could lead to higher profitability, or is attempting to implement innovative technology that could increase productivity, always be clear about the positive impact it will have on the staff. Doing so will generate excitement and build acceptance for the change.
5. Letting communication slide post-implementation
Even once you have successfully implemented the change; it does not mean that you can relax. It takes time and effort for the employees to get used to the new status quo. And sometime troubles can prop up even after implementation has been made.
Once the change is in place, increase your communication with the affected employees. Make sure that they have the right support in terms of training and tools to succeed in their evolved positions.