Change is key to the survival of any business, whether you are an entrepreneur or a large organisation change must be embraced in order to survive. A perfect example of this is the rock band the Rolling Stones, they have stood the test of time in an industry where changes can come about overnight. The reason they have survived is that they constantly redefine themselves in order to stay ahead of the game.
There are different forms of changes in business, some are incremental which could be termed as evolutionary changes, these are the small improvements that occur from time to time without causing too much disruption and almost go unnoticed. Then there are planned changes, they can be external or internal, changes that are influenced by government legislation can be termed as planned external changes where as planned organisational changes are termed as internal. There are also dynamic changes which arise out of circumstances unforeseen.
When planned changes are driven by the vision of senior management who seems to have no real end goal, other than cutting costs or improving efficiency to boost profits. It is difficult therefore, for the rest of the company to buy into an initiative that will probably put more pressure on them or result in job losses rather than giving them challenges to aspire to. Changes will then be viewed with suspicion across the organisation. And if the program is not handled carefully it could do harm to the moral of the company therefore not giving the desired outcome.
Before changes are implemented there are things to consider after the initial feasibility study such as the structuring of the changes, how will the procedures be implemented and by whom. The allocation of responsibilities, identifying resistance and a strategy
put in place to deal with it. There will be need for a system in place for the monitoring of the results as they must be evidential and measurable. The real test of the program
is whether the goals are reached which were determined at the outset.
The reason why some organisational changes are unsuccessful is the lack of Communication and feedback, senior management say “ok this is how it’s going to be” without consulting middle management and below who are expected to agree knowing that the plans are useless but have no say in the matter even if they know better and so resist the changes and just go through the motions with little or no enthusiasm.
More reasons for failure
Don’t allow enough time
Fail to gauge how much change should be undertaken
Don’t allow enough budget
Failure to appoint a committed change agent
Failure to make decisions in a timely way
No clear measurable goals set
Poor program set up
Lack of governance
Lack of budgetary control
One of the most overlooked is the failure to empower staff so that they can deliver.
The staff is the company without the staff there is no company yet many organisations overlook the needs and feelings of their employees. When they realise that their best assets are their people and invest in them then things will be better all round.
Some of the benefits of empowerment.
One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men
No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.
Your technologies and structures may be copied by competitors. None, however, can match your highly motivated people who care. Your people are your firm’s knowledge base and they are essential to your company’s success. Well trained, coached and highly motivated people are essential to the development and execution of strategies, where top management alone can no longer assure your firm’s competitiveness.
All managers and leaders are at the end of the day judged on the results they achieve. Empowering others and leveraging the full range of skills, knowledge, experience and personal attributes at your disposal helps to achieve results. Attracting and retaining good people is a major challenge for many organisations. If you are known as a manager or leader who empowers others, you will start to attract the best and they will stay longer.
Reinvent your business constantly
Institutionalise innovation Believe in your vision
Provide incentives and growth opportunities
Listen to your staff implement their ideas
Freedom to fail
Anticipate change in your industry
Focus on customer care
Make business fun