Donna's blog on coaching, leadership, and life

Positioning change can be as crucial as the change itself.

An effective leader is conscientious about the environment he or she is creating at any given time, but this becomes especially important during organizational change.

We may not be able to minimize the challenges and fear that people experience when they’re dealing with change. However, by positioning the change, we may help employees be more comfortable as they move towards and through the change—minimizing the negative impact to employee morale and productivity.

If it’s possible, consider positioning the change in your organization by preparing a presentation for your management team in which you:

• Acknowledge and validate the challenges and emotions managers may be experiencing.
• Provide your management team with a clear outline of the reorganization plan and strategies, including the business benefits.
• Position the next six months as a natural transition period.
• Commit to providing training to managers and staff to best prepare them for leading themselves and/or others through change.
• Provide specific language that may help managers respond to immediate employee concerns or questions.
• Make a specific commitment to continue to support technical and/or professional development (or career counseling) for employees, demonstrating the organization’s support to employees regardless of outcomes.
• Commit to regular status updates, when appropriate.
• Allow time for a Q&A. (Be prepared to answer questions directly where possible, and if you don’t yet have an answer or you’re unable to share an answer, assure employees that you’ll share more with them as soon as you’re able and/or it’s appropriate to do so. And then follow through.)

Whether you’re about to lead a large-scale reorganization, or you’re simply helping one person transition into a new role, your ability to effectively position the change can make a significant and positive difference to your team and your organization’s success.


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