Humans are wired to resist change. Most people can’t help the initial fear of panic even if they know that the change will ultimately be good for them. Despite the increasing rate of change in organisations in recent years, a Deloitte study shows a 60-70% failure rate for organisational change projects – a statistic that hasn’t changed since the 1970’s.
There are many reasons why people in general take a negative approach to change including:
- Fear of the unknown – even if the status quo isn’t ideal some people will resist change because they believe in the saying ‘better the devil you know.’
- Element of surprise – we don’t mind being surprised on our birthday but any other day of the year, we prefer predictability.
- Creatures of habit – we like to keep to our routines and not be distracted or confused by too much change.
- Loss of reputation – a change in a business direction may make some employee feel like their efforts or management are being made to look wrong or superseded.
- Feeling incompetent – part of the dread people feel when thinking about change is a fear of not being able to keep up mentally or physically with the changes.
What can a change manager do?
PeopleSense has worked with a range of industries as Change Managers to ensure significant change is accepted within a client’s organisation. A professional Change Manager may be called in for the following situations:
- A new owner or management team taking over
- Implementation of a new reporting structure
- Introduction of a new software system
- A new bonus or commission system
- Redundancy announcements
Benefits to the Business Using a Professional Change Manager
Using a professional change manager can have a major impact on the time and efficiency of a change project.
- Management can be warned of the possible objections and employees’ negative talk about the change. It’s hard for management to pre-empt how change will be received if they haven’t been involved in similar situations before.
- The hit to productivity can be reduced if the change is handled well and accepted by staff quicker.
- Employees may feel less intimidated about asking a question of a third party
- Shows staff that management understands they might be nervous about the change
- Someone new to the organisation and project who can review the communication materials to ensure it is appropriate and provides answers to the common questions
- Easier to keep details of the change confidential until it’s time to make the announcement
- Expert advice on how and when a change should be announced and implemented
- Management team aren’t being viewed as the villain if a third party is delivering bad news
- Dedicated person made available to answer questions so there is less gossip.
By using the services of a third party change manager, you are stacking the odds in your favour for implementing a change with the least amount of fear and unhappiness. The organisation can move forward with implementation faster if the majority of staff have come to accept the change.PeopleSense use experienced organisational psychologists to facilitate the change management process. Our psychologists are briefed in the most contemporary research and change management styles and have a ‘human’ interactive style. If your organisation needs any advice about a situation that may cause some resistance amongst staff, contact PeopleSense on 9388 9000 for a confidential chat.