How to Effectively Navigate Major Company Changes

Change is a central ingredient for business success, whether it’s chasing the latest technology, merging with another company, moving towards remote working, or anything in between. However, for changes to go ahead without issues, leaders must learn how to guide their team toward the finish line.


Set Clear Goals and Expectations

Smooth business changes begin with a solid plan, which involves writing goals, setting KPIs, and outlining team expectations. Each metric has to demonstrate progression, so avoid outlining “vanity” milestones that make the company look awesome and feel good.

To ensure your goals appeal to all types of thinking, they need to be backed up by hard statistics, value for employees carrying out the work, and reasons behind each goal.

Outline Valid Reasons for Change

Regardless of how detailed your plan is, the change won’t take off if all parties aren’t on board. Leaders must present their arguments to employees and stakeholders; the following tactics can be used to strengthen the case:

  • Explain how the goal agrees with the company’s values, and ask for thoughts and feelings.
  • Share empirical evidence relating to the change’s growth potential.
  • Demonstrate how the change fits in with the “big picture”.
  • Outline available resources and how they’ll factor into the change.

Practice Transparent Communication

With all parties on board and the change underway, it’s time to manage the project effectively, which calls for transparent communication. Instead of relying on mass emails with zero guarantees of receipt, an employee communication software can be used to keep employees informed and engaged with the process.

Create a Supportive Environment

Employee feelings can be difficult to manage during major change, especially if they don’t see the point or they face challenges. To help everyone feel comfortable engaging with new systems and speaking up without fear, create a supportive work environment.

Building a respectful and trusting workplace will take time, but a great place to start is giving employees a platform to voice their opinions without judgment.

Use Necessary Tools to Facilitate Change

In 2023, managing change involves the effective use of digital tools. The most fundamental tech for guiding change is a project management tool, which can track everything from progress to budgets. Using technology to guide a change project helps establish order, pull data, and demonstrate how everyone in the business fits in.

Follow Ned Herrmann’s Principles

Employees collaborating in the office

We’ve talked a lot about how different people think, which is why leaders should adopt “whole-brain thinking”, which is a concept derived by Ned Herrmann in 1976. In his research, he discovered that the brain can be split into quadrants, which were assigned a colour and explanation.

  • Yellow: The need to understand “why” the change is happening.
  • Blue: Sharing data, research, and other facts.
  • Red: Explaining how the company principles align with the changes.
  • Green: Outlining resources and explaining how the change will unfold.

Navigating major changes is no easy feat, especially when there’s a full team to get on board and guide through the finish line. By taking a whole-brain approach and following the tips outlined above, major changes stand a much higher chance of succeeding.

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