I recently did a quick survey to gauge what makes a rollout of change successful. Now, it was not a hugely scientific survey but it confirmed what I already knew – the majority of staff in companies are pretty unimpressed how it is done!
To be fair, I do not think that this reflects upon the efforts made by companies. I truly believe that companies really want to do it right and approach the rollout of change very seriously indeed by investing a lot of management time in the preparation and the announcement. It is such a shame for everyone that so often the results are poor.
When I am working with clients I can see the work they put into the preparation – they spend a lot of time on the clarity of the message, preparing the slide presentations, the logistics of where and when, the documents that they want to hand out, the rehearsal of the presentation etc. So, a significant investment goes into it. They are then really frustrated when the results are poor.
So what does make a rollout of change successful?
So many times, it is the individual that falls out of the process. We do all the big picture stuff with our slides and our documents, but tend to forget that we need to address the individual who is affected by the change.
We, as managers, need to remember that it is at times like this that we must put on our coaching hat and get into overdrive. We need to coach our people through this change – we all say that we welcome and embrace change but it is amazing how different we feel when it lands on our own doorstep!
What do you need to do?
As I said – get into coaching mode! As part of the rollout you must allocate time to spend with the individuals involved. Coach them through the rationale for the change, the good business reasons why this is happening and why these changes are for the good.
Then get to the crunch – get focussed on the WIIFM issue! No matter what is said, the underlying question is – What Is In It For Me? You must deal with that. Even if you perceive that this has no impact upon them, it will still be a question in their head.
So, deal with it. Talk about what this change has to do with them, how they need to respond, what your expectations are, and draw out their fears and worries. Get it all out in the open.
Investing your time doing this, shows you care and you have their interests at heart. A brilliant Powerpoint presentation will not achieve that!
So, are you planning a rollout of change in your business? If you are then include one to one coaching in your planning. If you want to discuss either a future rollout, or managing the impact of a recent one, then just get in touch and I will provide you with some tips and strategies tailored to your needs.
I would also love to hear any comments about your experiences in this space, so leave your comments below.
Ameena Falchetto says
Great post John!
When I work with my clients I find that listening to their needs is key to making sure that changes occur smoothly and successfully – after all, they work with me because they NEED change to happen.
Change is incredibly daunting for most people – we crave it, yet resist it when it happens … Luckily I DO have a coach to keep me accountable and grounded during the process 🙂