CEO Advisor Newsletter Augu 2022
Overcoming Resistance to Change
to Improve Sales and Profits
- Change can be one of the hardest (and scariest) things to implement in any company. Preparing for the acceptance of change, and then commitment to change are needed to be successful.
- Here are the Top 7 Reasons Companies Resist Change and How to Overcome It
- 1. Management (and Employees) Fear They Lack The Competence To Change
- No one wants to admit a fear they possess. And change requires not only overcoming fear, but all of the new processes and work that comes with it.
- But change in businesses is extremely necessary at times, and this necessitates changes in a) skills, b) processes, and c) employees. So this fear can be warranted at times. Some employees will feel that they won’t be able to make the needed changes and resulting transition very well. But it is management that must show true leadership when change is needed.
- The hard part is that some of these employees may be right and it is management’s job to identify this, train or make a needed replacement. In most cases, these fears will be unfounded, and that’s why change requires you to be an effective leader and motivator. Needed change in a successful manner includes new training programs as consistency in new processes and skills are vital to both the employees and the success of the company.
- 2. The Risk of Change is Greater Than The Risk Without Change
- The risk of change may be seen as the case to both management and the staff, and here lies the real challenge. Management must identify and embrace the need for change in order to improve and grow the company. But unfortunately, procrastination is the mode of operation believing that things will self-correct and this is where the most costly situation unfolds.
- Making changes requires you to decide to move in the direction of the unknown on the promise that something will be better as a result. Making a change is about managing risk. If you are making the case for change, be sure to set out in detailed, truthful terms why you believe the risk is warranted and needed. Make projections whenever you can, as this will greatly help in quantifying the results and bringing clarity to your plans.
- 3. Management Needs to Provide Leadership When Change is Needed
- If you see yourself as a change agent and a visionary, communicating a vision is not enough. Get the management team on board with your needed changes so that you or they can demonstrate how the new way can work. This entails identifying employees and management team members to take ownership and drive the initiative. For most people, seeing is believing and leadership by example can go a long way toward overcoming resistance, with a “Can do” attitude.
- 4. The Old Way is Both Known to All and Comfortable
- If you ask management and employees in a company to do things in a new way, as rational as that new way may seem to you, you may be setting yourself up against firm, established beliefs. But when change is absolutely needed, you and your management team have to step outside of your comfort zone and then communicate and demonstrate to your employees that the changes will result in the needed improvements in the company. Often times, this requires the help of an outside business advisor to plan, organize, support, implement and follow through on the needed changes.
- 5. Employees Can Get Overwhelmed and Resist
- Fatigue can really kill a change effort, both for individual employees and for an organization. When you’re implementing major changes, be aware of fear of the unknown as a factor in keeping people from moving forward, even if they are telling you they believe in the need for the changes. If a company has been through a lot of upheaval, people may resist change just because they are tired and overwhelmed, perhaps at precisely the time when more substantial change is most needed. If this were to occur, be very generous with praise and with understanding for people’s complaints throughout the change process.
- When you communicate clearly and regularly the need and the benefits of the change, no matter how painful the process may be, employees will understand for the most part, especially when the entire management team is on the same page and communicating the same message. But that’s not enough, and fear of the unknown can produce further fatigue. You’ve got to motivate and show your appreciation, as well, and be patient enough to let people vent without excessive unproductive negativity. But stay the course. Your clear message needs to include that you are committed to change.
- 6. Employees (and even Management) Can Be Skeptical About Results
- It’s important to remember that few worthwhile changes are conceived and clearly communicated in their best version from the beginning. Skeptics perform an important function of challenging the change so that it can be improved upon prior to implementation. So listen to your skeptics among your employees and management team because you will gain valuable improvements to your plan for changes. And then reiterate the high level benefits of the needed changes and that their input has value.
- 7. Employees May Not Believe in the Changes and Know It Will Result in Substantial Work
- The truth is, sometimes your idea of change is just not a prudent idea. Sometimes people are not fearful when they resist. They just see that it is not best for the company, the employees and your customers. And even if you are not all wrong, it’s important not to ignore when people have rational objections. What is critical to discern is, are they resisting to change because they truly believe it is not best for the company or are they resisting because they see a lot of work ahead.
- This concept of challenging the quality of the change vs. resistance to change and more work is vital and takes expertise, objectivity and some seasoned questioning to sift through it. To win people’s commitment for change, you must engage them on both a rational level and an emotional level. Your confidence, planning and persistence in change will make believers in your change.
- CEO Advisor, Inc. is a professional change agent, and we focus on your needs, goals and help you to execute on your plan. Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, President of CEO Advisor, Inc. at (949) 629-2520, by email at MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com or visit us at www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information or to schedule a no cost initial consultation at your office.
Craig Cooke Joins CEO Advisor, Inc. in Southern California
- CEO Advisor, Inc. is excited to announce that Craig Cooke has joined CEO Advisor, Inc. as a CEO Advisor in Orange County, CA. Craig Cooke is a dynamic entrepreneur, digital expert and business advisor. Craig was formerly the CEO of Rhythm Interactive, Inc. for 26 years from January, 1996 to March, 2022. Craig Cooke’s expertise in growth, strategy, digital transformation and digital marketing is top in the industry.
- Craig has deep expertise and experience with companies across a wide array of industries to design and build web applications of all types for both growth and cost-efficiencies, as well as, a full range of digital marketing expertise for accelerated growth.
- Prior to becoming a business advisor and CEO of Rhythm, Craig Cooke was the Interactive Co-Chair for the American Advertising Federation, Co-Founder of My Empowered World, Chief Technology Officer of Triax Media Group and other positions.
- Craig Cooke achieved a Bachelors in Science in Business Administration from California State Polytechnic University-Pomona.