Managing and leading change is an absolute necessity regardless of your role. In my experience, there are a few essentials that will help you lead through change.
First, communicate! Over communicate if necessary but you need to communicate what will be changing and, more importantly, why. Here are some questions I suggest you have answers to when announcing the change:
- What is the organization changing?
- Why is the organization choosing to make this change now?
- What are the benefits of this change?
- How will the change impact the team?
- In order adopt this change, what other adjustments (changes) will be required?
Remember, when communicating change, initial responses will be emotional. Tap into those emotions by telling a story about another organization/team that went through a similar change and how they were successful. Alternatively tell a story of a team that chose not to go through the change and how that impacted them.
Provide support. Be supportive of team members who ask questions. Listen intently to their concerns and be honest in your responses. If you don’t know, say so, find an answer and return to the team member! You team members may not have had the time you have to process the change. Allow them to be frustrated, angry or whatever emotions they are experiencing.
Check out this short (2-minute) video of The Elephant, The Rider and the Path – A Tale of Behavior Change