4 First Steps of Change – When Change Seems Impossible

First Steps of Change making the IMpossible Possible picture of man jumping

The First Steps of Change Are Critical – Especially When Change Seems Impossible
When organizational change seems impossible to accept and overcome, it is up to leadership to ease the path for employees by clearly outlining the first steps of change in a way that makes sense. Leaders need to understand how it feels as an individual contributor and manager to hear that organizational change is required and that they must be part of it or risk being left behind.

What the Change Research Says
Our organizational alignment research found that factors relating to employees’ positive responsiveness to the changes needed to remain competitive accounted for an almost 5-to-1 difference in performance in terms of revenue, profitability, customer loyalty, leadership effectiveness, and employee engagement.

4 First Steps of Change – When Change Seems Impossible
In our twenty years of change management consulting, here is what we have learned about successfully navigating the rough seas.

  1. Plan and Prepare for Change
    When you as leaders have determined that change is required to succeed, you need to develop a clear and compelling message for the troops. No longer can you just dictate what needs to happen. You must try to inspire your employees to understand your vision and fully commit to it.Tell a captivating story that explains the rationale for change and what success will look like at the company, team, and individual levels. Make sure the story you tell is relevant, simple and straightforward so that it can be easily and accurately cascaded throughout the organization.
  2. Provide Forums for Questions and Discussion
    Few will jump aboard the change bandwagon at the outset. Most will react with denial at first and then with resistance. It is as if employees don’t want to face the fact that the change is real.Initially it is easier to hold on to the past. And then, when they realize that change is going to happen, they resist it. Why? Because it is often much easier to hold on to what was comfortable and known than to meet the challenge of the new and different.

    The best way to guide employees from change denial and resistance to change acceptance is to be available to answer their concerns and questions about what the change will mean for them as a group, as a team, and as an individual. They want to know specifically how the change will affect them personally. Tell them what you know, what you do not know yet, and when you will be able to fill in any information gaps.

  3. Provide Support and Resources
    Once employees accept that change must occur, be there to encourage them and to supply whatever change management training and resources that will help them move forward. Understand that change can be hard work for some and that individuals will go through change at different paces. Some will be excited to explore what the change can do for them and others will still be uneasy and lack confidence as they try to learn new skills and a new process.
  4. Encourage Commitment
    Use your best performance management techniques to reward the behaviors that lead to change. It won’t be long before the change has become embedded in employee attitudes and has become familiar and natural.

The Bottom Line
It is a leader’s responsibility to clearly outline the first steps of change to begin the overall change process in a way that makes sense for the unique challenges and opportunities faced by those most affected by change.  Actively involve your key stakeholders in creating those first steps so that they are fully committed to the beginning of the journey.

To see if your change initiative is set up for success, download our Change Management Health Check Now

Comments are closed.

The Managing Virtual Teams program was extremely valuable. Your consultant/ facilitator’s fundamental knowledge of Synopsys as a company provided an incredible base to build upon while tackling the complications of managing and working with globally distributed teams. My team walked away walked away with highly useful practices and tools. It was an excellent use of our time.

Debra Martucci
Vice President, Information Technology

We recently partnered with LSA Global to offer our Supervisors and Managers a customized two-day management training program. Everyone who attended said it was by far the best management training program they had ever attended. The content was rich and highly interactive. The case studies were relevant. Each participant walked away from the training much better equipped to lead their teams.

Jeff Coon
Director of Human Resources

On behalf of Roche and my staff I would like to sincerely thank you for your help with this. The English as a Second Language (ESL) assessment and coaching that you provided for our team was a great success.

Cam Greig
Associate Director

Roche

VNUS Medical has been very pleased with the effective management development programs that LSA Global has delivered for us over the last four years. The programs have been universally facilitated by experienced and best in class instructors. The knowledge gained by our management team has been put into practice very quickly. VNUS is very happy to be working in partnership with LSA because they consistently deliver excellent programs that receive exceptional feedback from our management team.

Cindee Van Vleck
Director Human Resources

Thank you to LSA Global for their partnership and support in helping us to design and roll-out our valuable management development training program. I personally have partnered with LSA Global at four of my previous companies. It continues to be a delight working with LSA. We look forward to partnering with them at Blackhawk Networks for future training and consulting needs.

Suzanne Kinner
VP Human Resources

Blackhawk Network

I have worked with other training companies and found it to be more of a seller/buyer relationship than one of matching the right expertise to our business issues. That’s what LSA does – ask the hard questions, listen, and understand our business needs. We receive the benefit of their expertise from assistance with personal development plans to enhancing team performance, to looking at enterprise-wide challenges. It’s all about helping our business succeed as we grow. Right now, LSA is providing great ideas, a fresh approach, and valuable guidance as we develop our management team and accelerate our client relationship management results.

Kristin Westland-Kaune
Director, Team Development

Our company engaged LSA to do a specialized “train the trainer” program, and the consultant’s performance outdid our exceptionally high standards for such a program. Very crucial to the success of this program was the work done upfront to discuss our needs and to interview key members of our organization so that the program specifically met our goals. Our facilitators continue to comment on the success of the program. Thanks also for the follow-up.

Frank Abbott
Chief Financial Officer

We consider LSA our true business partner in the areas of Learning and Organizational Development. From Strategic Planning to Presentation Skills and Management Training, they continue to provide excellent value and extremely high quality solutions – not just one time events. I recommend them to anyone looking to drive true business results.

Michelle A. Mitchell
Vice President, Worldwide Human Resources

Avon’s success is dependent on strong relationships among our Customers, Representatives, Associates, and outside resources we hire to help us meet our business objectives. We were very pleased with the results from working with LSA Global to design and facilitate a custom program for our events management team. LSA demonstrated responsiveness, flexibility, and an innovative approach to working with us.

Deanna Rudnitsky
Senior Manager, HR Destiny Sales Region

LSA exceeded all my expectations. We interviewed 7 potential training and consulting partners and selected LSA due to their expertise, flexibility, and breadth and depth of solutions. We were able to construct a management training course from the modules most appropriate to our needs, and are able to provide additional training from their well developed portfolio of experts. Our managers galvanized as a team throughout the session and are better prepared for the rigors of a competitive market.

Mitch Mandich
CEO

Edify

I highly recommend LSA Global to anyone who is looking to improve individual or organizational effectiveness through their top quality programs and broad range of expertise.

Greg Pappas
VP of Human Resources

We contacted LSA to help us with customized management development. LSA worked with me to identify a solution that would meet our exact needs. We decided to start at the top and ran the program for our executive team. It was such a great success that we hope to roll it out companywide. We look forward to a long-term partnership with LSA Global and their team of experts.

Barry L. Byrd, SPHR
Human Resources Manager

Here’s a token of my appreciation for ALL your efforts. I’m offering my most sincere appreciation, and it extends to all the folks who made our customized management development programs possible.

Susan Anderson
Workforce Planning Bureau

LSA helped us design and deliver a blended learning solution for our leaders to help drive our growth plans in a way that aligned with our specific culture and values. LSA understood our business, had deep expertise in the content areas, tailored the programs to fit our specific needs, and delivered great results. They constantly strive to deliver business impact and align their solutions with our business initiates, culture, and performance management systems. I highly recommend them to anyone looking to take their leaders to the next level.”

Beth A. Taylor
Vice President of Human Resources

Thoratec

I continue to be impressed by the level of leadership development and management expertise and quality of advice and facilitation that LSA has to offer. What a smart and client-centric group of great people who really know how to help leaders attract, engage, develop and retain top talent.

Tracy Esposito
Director, HR Business Partner

Evaluate your Performance

Toolkits

Toolkits

Download key published insights and tools from industry experts highlighting best practices in the areas of talent, strategy and culture.

More

Health Checks

Health Checks

Want to know how you stack up against leading organizations?  Receive a complimentary benchmarking analysis courtesy of an LSA Expert.

More

Whitepapers

Whitepapers

Get up to speed on timely solutions critical to your business. Published by LSA Experts based upon client feedback and key industry trends.

More

Methodology

Methodologies

First we identify the key metrics you want to improve. Then we assemble a dedicated team of elite experts who have successfully solved similar problems with similar clients.

More

Blogs

Stay up to do date with the latest information on how we help high growth companies align their culture and talent with strategy.

More

Case Studies

Client Case Studies

Real world consulting and training approaches from LSA projects, providing insights on how your company can outperform the competition.

More