Some people like change, but most don’t/won’t change unless it is forced on us…
- The doctor tells us we must lose weight/stop drinking, or we’ll die.
- The spouse/key employee/client leaves because we didn’t address their concerns.
- We become paperless/work remotely only when forced to by the COVID-19 lock down.
Business is not static – we know we must innovate, adapt, re-engineer and/or widen our lane to stay relevant in a rapidly changing world.
Although we know this academically, putting change into practice is more difficult. We often feel apprehensive about implementing change and moving outside our comfort zones. Why?
Reasons can include fear of the unknown, fear of failure, perceived loss of power or status, laziness, lack of skills/understanding, peer pressure, mistrust of the timing/process/change leader, people politics and so on.
Understanding the five steps in the change process can help us implement effective change, both personally and in our businesses:
- Awareness – we know that if we don’t change the business will suffer, profitability will drop, staff or customers will leave etc
- Acceptance – we accept that we must do something about the situation
- Action – we take action – perhaps by reorganizing staff, updating product lines, launching a marketing campaign, hiring a new sales rep, investing in technology, refinancing, upskilling, or even exiting the business
- Accountability – being accountable to someone for implementation is key to not reverting to old habits and comfort zones (especially once the immediate crisis passes)
- Acknowledgement –reinforce change by acknowledging progress and celebrating successes – praise, rewards, words of encouragement and recognition all help us stay the course.
Covid-19 has forced huge change on us all as we transition from business continuity to business recovery, to the new Business as Usual. Many business owners are embracing change, recognizing that the genie won’t go back into the bottle again – are you one of them?
Register now for Q2’s “Embracing the New Business as Usual” webinar at 2pm on Tuesday 28 July 2020 where we’ll unpack the lessons from lockdown and how to implement effective change in our businesses. Click here.
“It’s not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent; but the one most adaptable to change.” – Charles Darwin