Change – the tension between what is comfortable and what is necessary

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Change management

It seems that the pace of change is ever increasing. If you look at the history of mankind this appears to be clearly the case. Stone age man had little reason to change quickly. It is in built within us all to be comfortable with the familiar. Yet that comfort can be shattered in a moment in the event of sudden change for which we are unready.  The ability to adapt to changed situation has been a strength in human development.

Clinging to the current state

A common business paradox I have come across is that of the hated IT systems that no one likes, and everyone moans about. Replace it, and overnight it is fondly remembered as a wonderful tool. As examined in 4 Reasons Why Change is so Difficult change means letting go, fear of the new situation and lack of knowledge, along with uncertainty.   Although change can sometimes be exciting, it is difficult to engage people in the excitement. So taking organisations through change means reducing the fear. Removing the lack of knowledge and uncertainty as much as possible to help drive the excitement for something better.

Overcoming Change resistance

Clear leadership is key in overcoming resistance to change. This is expanded on in the Harvard business school post. Surprise, uncertainty, lack of control all add to that underlining fear of change. But sometimes it will not bring improvement and will cause more work, then change becomes a genuine threat to people. Change often impacts jobs. Even positive change, changes the way roles are performed. Leading the way through change can be improved by good communication and actively involving those affected. Few of us can rely on the skill of someone like Nelson Mandela to lead changes. winning hearts and souls. But supporting our case with solid facts and building trust from those affected is a huge step in the right direction.

Change in your own world

Change is unavoidable.  But it can be made easier by involving and engaging with the likely victims as early as possible. Bring your audience with you and the journey as you lead is far more comfortable than forcing their hand at the last minute. Sharing the experience is also likely to allow a wider scrutiny; leading to opportunity to tune and improve the change its self.