Whether it’s a new job, a new relationship, or a new routine, change can be both exciting and challenging. It’s a chance to experience something new and make a positive impact in one’s life. One thing’s for sure: it’s inevitable, and it’s essential for growth and progress in every aspect of our lives, be it personal or professional. Despite that, resistance to change is a common human reaction that can prevent us from moving forward.
Overcoming resistance to change requires a proactive approach that addresses people’s concerns and builds support for the change. So, what can we do? In this blog, we will discuss seven practical tips that can help turn the tides and get everyone on your side when it comes to implementing changes, while at the same time, making it a positive experience for those involved.
Why do people resist change?
We know for a fact that the only thing that is constant in this world is change. Yet, why people still resist it, especially when introducing revised processes or rolling out new technology? Here are a few reasons you may be coming across resistance when implementing changes in your business.
1. Lack of trust and engagement
How well does your workforce know and trust you? When individuals do not trust the individuals or entities driving the change, they are less likely to embrace it. A McKinsey study found that only 26% of organizational transformations succeed, and one of the primary reasons for this failure is a lack of trust between management and employees.
This can be due to the lack of transparency and not involving employees in the change process – a rookie mistake to avoid. Without actively engaging employees in the decision-making, it can be harder for leaders to build trust, encourage ownership, and foster a sense of commitment towards the change.
2. Poor communication
Poor communication is another common reason why people resist change. When individuals do not understand the reasons behind the change or how it will impact them, they are more likely to resist it.
Without proper and clear communication, it’s hard for employees to understand why the change is needed and how it will impact them. Having these unknowns only cause uncertainties and concern for everyone.
3. Past failures
Past failures can also solidify people’s resistance to further change. When individuals have experienced previous failed attempts at change, they may be hesitant to embrace new ones. This is likely the case when previous attempts have caused them to lose time or energy that could’ve been used on what they believed would’ve been more useful.
If the leaders driving the changes are unsuccessfully pushing for initiatives one after the other with little reflection on why the previous ones didn’t work, it’s understandable why past failures are making everyone feel hesitant. In such an instance, it’s crucial that leaders learn from past mistakes, so they can build trust and confidence in the change process.
4. Bad timing
Finally, not getting the timing right can cause people to be less accepting to change. Sometimes it’s inevitable. Organizations must always be able to react fast to changing circumstances. But when individuals are already overwhelmed or experiencing significant personal or professional challenges, they may be less likely to embrace new changes.
Without considering the timing of the change and how it will impact employees, you increase the likelihood for resistance. Changes shouldn’t be implemented in a vacuum, and you should be aware of the current situation for everyone involved before any transition.
7 ways to overcome resistance to change
With some of the reasons explored, what can organizations do to overcome this resistance and guarantee the success of their change initiatives?
1. Communicate the benefits
One of the primary reasons why people resist change is that they don’t understand why it’s necessary. It’s essential to communicate the benefits of the change clearly. Explain how the change will improve efficiency, increase revenue, or improve customer satisfaction. Use data and statistics to support your claims and be sure to address any potential concerns.
2. Get everyone involved from the start
People are more likely to support a change when they feel involved in the process. Involve employees from different departments and levels of the organization in the planning and decision-making process. Encourage feedback and suggestions, and make sure everyone feels heard.
3. Address concerns
As mentioned previously, resistance to change can often stem from fear of the unknown. Address any concerns or fears that employees may have and provide solutions to potential issues. Make sure employees understand the timeline for the change, what their role will be, and how the change will affect them.
4. Provide training and support
Training and support are crucial to the success of any change initiative. Ensure that employees have the knowledge and tools they need to adapt to the change. Provide training sessions, workshops, and one-on-one coaching if necessary. Offer ongoing support and make sure employees know who to go to if they have questions or concerns.
5. Celebrate the small wins
Change can be daunting, and it’s essential to celebrate small wins along the way. Recognize and celebrate the progress made towards the ultimate goal. Celebrating small wins boosts morale, motivation, and helps keep employees engaged and committed to the change initiative.
6. Instill a culture of change
Change is not a one-time event; it’s a continuous process. To overcome resistance to change, it’s essential to instill a culture of change within your organization. Encourage a mindset of innovation, experimentation, and continuous improvement. Make change a part of your company’s DNA, and employees will be more receptive to future initiatives.
7. Measure and evaluate
Measuring and evaluating the success of the change initiative is essential. Use data to track progress towards the ultimate goal and make adjustments as necessary. Solicit feedback from employees and use it to improve future change initiatives.
Overcome resistance to change with IFS assyst
Overcoming resistance to change is a challenging but essential task for any organization that wants to remain relevant and competitive in today’s dynamic business environment.
Looking for a more efficient way to implement change in your business? Reduce resistance and effortlessly adopt change in your organization with IFS assyst. Helping hundreds of enterprises transform their ITSM and ESM capabilities, IFS assyst can provide complete visibility and control over your IT infrastructure and streamline your IT change management processes, as well as provide your people the tools they need to do the work that needs to get done.
See how your organization can get started by booking a free online demo today!