Make Change a habit

Today, businesses need to be flexible, agile and willing to respond to market variations.

If the business needs to change, then the employees need to change with it.  And, when it comes down to it, the most challenging aspect of managing change is managing the people.

So how do you as a business leader help your people to help you? In his book ‘The Power of Change’, Charles Duhigg says that we all have habits and we are all too comfortable with them.  When changing your business, bear in mind that your employees will not want to change their old habits without good reason.  Communication is the key here.  Emphasise the ‘why’ clearly and regularly and always try to make it feel familiar by ‘dressing it in old clothes’.  Be honest, be clear, make the change feel like something that everyone already knows.  Create a vision of how the Company’s core strengths (for example, great planning, rapid response or customer service) can be used to implement the change.  Create a working party and engage them in the communication. Go through what you are going to say with them before you go out to the full team.  Use familiar language – keep in mind that the mention of the word ‘change’ will make you enemies – so think carefully about what you are going to say before you communicate.  Use words which are commonplace, introducing the new vocabulary as people become more comfortable. 

Get your people in the habit of change. And they will make the journey with you.