#15: Decrease resistance to change
or listen our podcast on:
When speaking with senior managers, I asked what the biggest challenges in their transformation was and the challenges were aligning everyone behind a vision and decreasing the resistance to change in the organization. Why do people resist change?
People might often resist change when they are afraid of what that change will bring or that it will not be positive for the organization. Some people are so used to being right they resist change just for the sake of being right. While others may be afraid of losing power status or even job security.
How can you respond to a person who is not willing to change?
1- Listen and Show That You Care
Listen and show that you care because the mood of that team member can shift from fears of uncertainties and self-doubt to finding ways to cope their fears and looking to the future opportunities that are possibly ahead.
2- Explain Why You Are Transforming
Explain why you are transforming the organization. It might not be obvious to everyone in your team why you are changing. This will not be an explanation once or twice it will most likely be constantly reminding your team of the reasons why you are changing and why you cannot go back to the old ways of the organization.
3- Inspire with Stories of Transformation
Telling stories speaks directly to the limbic brain. If you are simply stating facts, you will only be talking to the neocortex or the rational side of the brain. The rational side of the brain is not going to trigger new behaviors. If you tell a story of a transformation of another organization that has transformed, that will help people to take action and inspire them to transform as well.
4- Create a Safe Environment
Creating a safe environment is crucial during transformation because this is a time of adaptation. Adapting means learning new skills and learning new skills means that mistakes will be made. Make your team a place where mistakes are not punished so that people will be willing to make mistakes and be open to trying new things. Including transparency as part of your safe environment is important as you will have more honest and open streams of communications with team members who may be having trouble adapting to the change.
5- Focus on the Positive People
A big mistake while transforming an organization is to focus on those members who are being negative and trying to get others to be behind their same message. If you focus too much on the negative people all your attention will be focused on the negative and that will grow. Instead you want to focus on the positive people in the group to watch the transformation grow.
6- Involve People as Much as Possible
People are not against change, but they are against being changed. Involve your team in as much of the transformation as you can. If you make decisions and involve them in as much as possible, your team will feel like they are making decisions with you and the implementation will be a lot smoother. The process to come to a decision will be slower, but the implementation of the change will be faster.
7- Work on the Mood of Your Team by Having Fun
Doing something nice for your team can help boost morale. We are alive to be happy and successful not just to cross items off a to-do list. So, it’s okay to have a little fun and not take things too seriously!