The challenge of organisational change
Greg Kirwan discusses how to successfully lead through a big organisational change?
In today’s world of work, leaders need to be more resilient than ever. The impact of the pandemic and a widely dispersed workforce have had major repercussions on the way leaders and their teams need to operate. It’s essential for leaders to be future fit and have the necessary tools at their disposal so that their actions are empirically proven to stabilise organisations. Leaders also need to be able to inspire, influence, and transform teams, be courageous and authentic, and increasingly need to change or strengthen the culture within teams.
In this series, Olivier Mythodrama’s CEO Greg Kirwan looks at how leadership teams can make a positive impact, what happens when leaders get it wrong, how they can overcome challenges and why they need to be future fit.
Managing a team through any change can be challenging, whether it’s bringing in new team members, a merger or acquisition or a global pandemic, the strength and agility of the leadership team is crucial to navigate that journey.
What do you need to do to successfully lead through a big organisational change?
I’ve spoken about communication many times before, but it’s an essential skill of leadership. Gone are the days of being able to walk down the corridor to speak to colleagues or catching up at the coffee machine, it takes a lot more effort and energy to keep a team together when they’re in multiple locations and in some instances multiple time zones. Finding the right balance and the right times to communicate to pull your team together so that you can share important information is key to bringing your team along on any journey of change. It’s up to leaders to keep team morale high and communicating is an essential part of achieving this.
Bring your team on the journey with you and collaborate with them to plan through the change. Allowing your team to understand what’s happening and why, and how they can be included in what happens next provides you with support and helps to demystify what’s changing for them.
Sometimes change comes as a surprise, sometimes it’s planned, but however it comes it can be unsettling. It’s essential to listen both to yourself and to your team. By listening to yourself you’ll know if something doesn’t feel right and can act upon it. Listening to your team’s concerns and thoughts can help reduce their unease and fears.
Employee wellbeing is high on the agenda for workplace management. It can have a huge impact on employee retention, team morale and can have a negative effect on performance if not handled properly. Employees want a work life balance and increased flexibility especially following the uncertainty and change of the last couple of years. You need to be aware of your team’s wellbeing and put steps in place to achieve a balance between an individual’s wants and needs and that of the organisation. This is a challenging but important step.
As I’ve said, change is challenging even when that change is positive. People inherently like stability, so anything that rocks that needs managing with care. Taking small, informed steps to achieve an end goal, bringing your team on the journey and being open and honest with the details of the change are crucial for a successful transition.
Olivier Mythodrama has been delivering innovative and thought provoking leadership training for over 20 years. The people and organisations we have worked with describe our training as life changing. We think they’re right. We already work with some of the world’s leading businesses. Are you ready to join them?