The mantra for effecting positive change within an existing business needs to be “the simpler the better.” This involves making lots of tiny changes that eventually become the larger transformation the business owner has in mind.
A change management specialist knows change can be scary for a company. Moreover, changes need to be handled carefully by those at the top.
This is because the creative vision of a business owner can be very different from the visceral experience of employees who might find change traumatic.
However, you can approach change management in small but structured ways. This will enable your business, at any point, to address even large obstacles without getting mired in the details.
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Taking Stock Before Enacting Change
Begin with what you already know. After all, your previous knowledge and experience have led you to this point. You will build your future successes on the successes of your past.
By focusing on what you already know to be true about your company, including its strengths and weaknesses, your starting point will become clear. Then you will be ready to begin making the changes you envision.
Considering the Starting Point
In the beginning, you should:
- Take stock of similar situations you have faced in the past. Don’t fall into the trap of making the same mistakes twice.
- Compare old projects your employees have worked on and use feedback constructively for new ones.
- Determine the core skills you will need to employ for the changes you wish to make.
- Ask yourself which staff members will be involved. How can you help them adapt to and facilitate the process of change more easily?
- If you were to leave your position tomorrow, what would you tell the person replacing you? How could you empower them to effectively take your place and fill your shoes?
Using Your Own Knowledge to Effect Positive Change
Relying on your past experience and remaining objective can help you bridge the gap between the starting point and your goal. Remember that you are looking to use the knowledge you already possess to achieve your goals.
Meanwhile, also choose to remain flexible. In this way, you can more easily see solutions to the problems that will inevitably occur along the way.
Using what you already know, however, will help to minimize these problems. Therefore, molehills won’t turn into mountains so big they put a halt to the changes you are trying to make.
Simplifying the Process
Bringing change down to basics involves structuring it around core principles. This keeps everyone moving along on the same path, especially if you throw a dash of team spirit in.
On the other hand, when people feel stressed they can easily lose focus and become fixated on minutiae. If you allow that situation to become serious, it can derail the whole transformation process.
But identifying and sticking to core principles helps prevent cognitive blindness. It keeps the light at the end of the tunnel shining so brightly everyone can clearly see their way.
Additionally, monitoring everyone’s progress as you go along will help the entire team to more quickly reach that light together.