All businesses know that “change is a constant.” Even though external crises increase the pressure to change things internally, effective change management is essential for business development, especially given the modern world’s frenetic pace of change. Constant internal change can quickly become overwhelming for your employees and result in stress, decreased performance, loss of focus and commitment, and disengagement. Therefore, it is important to make sure you implement your change initiatives sustainably, in order to retain talent and to ensure that change leads to a boost of productivity.
At Audvice, we are rapidly growing our team in a booming and fast-moving industry. That is why we understand the importance of effective change management, and why we want to share some insights from within our own virtual walls, on how you can make sure to avoid change fatigue in your company.
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#1 embrace learning and continuous improvement
Change doesn’t happen overnight. Nor should it! At Audvice, we focus more on learning and continuous, gradual improvement, and we make sure to communicate that internally. It takes a lot of pressure off the team, and gives everyone the space to develop in a supportive environment. If you emphasize being agile and flexible, rather than forcing your employees to perfectly nail new challenges the second you introduce them, you will not only ultimately achieve your goals faster, but also in a more sustainable way. Also, make sure that everyone is motivated to do their best, but can still be honest if they make mistakes, as the road to successful change heavily depends on learning by doing. Making mistakes, and sharing and discussing them in your team, in a polite and respectful manner, will only help to know what has to improve and be done differently.
#2 be appreciative of past efforts
Imagine you work really hard on something, and the next day, someone tells you to do everything differently, and doesn’t recognize the great job you did. You would also feel discouraged and lose motivation. That's why it’s super important to honor your employee’s previous efforts, and in addition, to empower them to take it further. That way, they won’t feel like you are criticizing them for what they did in the first place, but that you are trusting that they are capable of continuously improving their performance.
#3 don’t use too much of their time
The change initiatives you introduce in your company will eventually affect everyone working there. Of course, that also includes the employees who will be actively working towards the changes you want to see. But as they are also busy with their usual tasks, you have to make sure that constant change doesn’t create extensive extra work for them. Having your employees sit in hours and hours of meetings, trainings, onboardings and presentations will certainly create that overload you don’t want to see, not only for your employees, but also for the person in charge, as they have to set all these events up, most likely more than once. That is why we at audvice drink our own champagne, and use our app to speed up the process and facilitate all the events above, by moving them to well-structured playlists, and sharing them in our team's audio library. Accompanying structural changes with playlists not only allows us to work more efficiently, but also makes the process more underlying and constant instead of intensive and overwhelming.
Here are a few examples of playlists we and our customers record to make change management more efficient:
Playlist for software onboardings, (e.g. “Salesforce Guide”), when introducing a new tool
Playlist for briefings before kick-off meetings, to present the change initiative for the first time, to make sure everyone comes prepared and jump into meaningful conversations quicker
A recap playlist of a change initiative you have introduced, so everyone can fall back on it to freshen up their memory any time (e.g. “Introduction to OKRs”)
Playlists about reporting, that will save hours of meetings which would just be about updates (e.g. “Reporting July”)
#4 define, measure and communicate the outcome
One of our key lessons was to make sure to define the goals we want to achieve with the changes we implement and to communicate them. It’s important for everyone to understand the reasons for jumping on board. Of course, the success metrics vary from project to project. It’s important to measure the change management performance in connection with the project performance and the individual performance, since the individual is the unit of change. Once the overall goal and the measurement strategy are established, this information must be communicated. Informing your employees about what is going on, and giving updates doesn’t need to happen synchronously, with all of you being at the same (virtual) place at the same time, but you can explore an efficient, asynchronous way of communication, that is still very personal and able to provide the right context.
#5 get your team involved
Most of the time, change initiatives are launched top-down, and of course, a specific leader should be in charge. But since your employees will be the ones affected by these initiatives, why not get them involved? At Audvice, if we want to implement changes that will affect everyone, the person in charge of the initiative records a playlist, where they give an intro to the initiative in one or two tracks. After that, they share this playlist with either specific people, a dedicated group or with everyone in the team, depending on how many people it makes sense to involve. After listening to the intro, everyone can add their own tracks with their thoughts, feedback, questions, etc. It’s basically asynchronous brainstorming, and such playlists are often enough to get started on a project. We can always discuss further in our weekly team meetings, but we save time because everyone already knows what’s going on.
If you like what you read, and want to make change management more efficient for your company, get started for free today!