After reading the above title, you may have thought: “I’m really interested in that, but I don’t know if it is possible to accelerate change, given that I am a new leader coming in at a time when so much change is already occurring.”
This article will help you think about change in new ways so that you can lead positive change more readily, more quickly and more successfully. Here are four change accelerators that will ensure your success:
1. Have an Elastic Mind
People are motivated by a clear “why,” the reason a change will make a difference to them and their lives, so you must communicate a desirable vision of the future. However, while employees need to see and focus on that desired big picture, if you all “live” only in that future, you make no progress. Progress is further hampered when people love the picture of the future but don’t know how to get there.
The solution? Think about the future while also deciding which steps to take today. Change, even change people really want, is often slowed because they don’t focus on what they can do right now to make progress. Develop an elastic mind that can think about now and the future and you will accelerate your speed of change.
2. Keep the Lines of Communication Open
Don’t simply communicate the change, as the first step in the process, and then be done with it. Instead, commit to communicating frequently as you and your employees carry out actions to support the change. Objectives will be revised, priorities will switch, problems will arise and, ultimately, you may need to make adjustments. Open two-way communication will make it easier to do so.
3. Seek Out Your Supporters First
Some employees will be quick to back your ideas and jump to action to ensure the success of any changes. Who are those people? Who has been most adaptable to new change? Who is most likely to see the full value of a change? It makes sense to engage them in your change efforts first. Once they are on board, they can rally the rest of the group.
4. Take Baby Steps
Even if the change you want to implement is huge, break it down into smaller projects and actions so that the changes aren’t overwhelming to employees.
Of course, you need to keep the big picture in mind so that all the individual pieces contribute to the ultimate goal. However, by creating more manageable action items, you create momentum as employees succeed and gain confidence in the new plan. With each phase, they will feel more positive about the overall goal.
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