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Endless Possibilities Blog

Organizational Change

Organizational Change

October 30th, 2013

The nature and complexity of organizational change facing leaders today has increased exponentially over of the last decade. The frenetic pace frequently results in people fleeing in different directions, diving for cover, or crossing their arms, and digging in their heels in defiance. How many of you have faced those reactions as you strived to implement transformational changes? 

How many of us, as leaders, have experienced the urge to do the very same when we learned there was yet another change we were expected to champion?

The key to successful change lies with the people within your workplace. Schneider, Brief, & Guzzo said: “Organizations as we know them are the people in them; if the people do not change, there is no organizational change.” People create two factors that impact the success of change: climate, and culture. 

Climate encompasses: 

  • the character of interpersonal relationships, 
  • the nature of the hierarchy, (reporting structure and policies), 
  • the character of the work, (flexible & innovative, or rigid & conservative?); and,
  • the focus of support and rewards. (what’s expected of them, and what they are rewarded for).

Culture: is the less conscious and more nebulous of the two. It’s the atmosphere of the workplace, encompassing such things as the values and beliefs of the staff, and the established way of being and doing of the organization. It is the most entrenched and powerful player in all aspects of change. Culture trumps everything and can be the silent killer of change! words.jpg

How then do we as leaders work in partnership with staff to implement sustainable change while nurturing ourselves?  

Successful, sustainable change is possible when we look at our workplace with new eyes and take different approaches. Some key strategies to embed change include:

  • Begin with the end in mind – take the time to look at the big picture and plan thoughtfully.
  • Co-create action plans with your key stakeholders.
  • Listen to those resistors, they have a reason for their concerns and are often sources of valuable information!
  • Go slow early, to go fast later; compromises may be necessary at the outset.
  • Take care to observe the culture and align your strategies to match it - take the best of what exists and build on it. You’ll win hearts and minds if you do!
  • Remove barriers and obstacles to innovation and flexibility.
  • Let go of what you don’t need to control.
  • Improve on the innovative practices and policies that are already in place.
  • Provide leadership development for others.
  • Model authentic leadership.

Even if you apply just half of these strategies you will be on the road to creating a solid foundation for lasting change in your organization.

Contact Endless Possibilities Executive Coaching & Consulting for expert training and coaching in the field of sustaining organizational change!

August 1st, 2013

Leaders in organizations everywhere are struggling to cope with the ever increasing pace and complexity of change which is further influenced by the demands of the new global economy, the shrinking planet, and the changing face and diverse expectations of the workforce.

Constantly tasked to shift from the familiar to the unfamiliar, reframing situations not only for themselves, but translating, and deciphering for those they lead, often, as the changes are unfolding around them. It can be like juggling fragile crystal while dancing on the head of a pin!

 The responsibilities of a leader within any change process are four-fold:

  • to help staff understand the need for the change, and to bridge any gaps that may exist - particularly is the change was an imposed one;
  • to support and empower staff by encouraging their participation in the change process;
  • to support staffing in dealing with any social, technical, or political factors that may arise from the change;
  • and, to manage any internal micro-political ramifications factors that may arise.  wave_of_change.jpg

Tips for leading change in complex situations:

1. Recognize that the rapid pace of change is here to stay.

2. Realize that coherence making is ongoing and is everyone’s responsibility. 

3. Understand that the focus must be on the changing context.  

4. Don’t jump to conclusions.

5. Leverage the sweet spots: build on existing relationships, and expand your network of collaborative partnerships.

6. Utilize evidence-based, quality driven decision-making and implementation processes.

Contact Endless Possibilities Executive Coaching & Consulting for expert training and coaching in the field of leading change!