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Changing how change happens

Change is constant they say. We often assume employees realise this and should be ready for any changes thrown at them. But employees are not averse to change itself but to how change affects them on a personal, every-day level: changing my lunch hour, not being able to get stationery.

We think resistance to change is about the big issues: job losses, fear of the unknown, distrust of management. We think that if we put these to rest, resistance will disappear. Much more dangerous are the hidden fears, including perceived inconveniences, fear I might not cope and perceived loss of status.

Change usually needs to happen fast, but build in time to engage employees and allow these hidden fears to percolate to the surface. Otherwise they will go underground, and fear will breed discontent as rumours and malicious gossip become the norm.

People issues around change are just as important as, and have much longer-lasting consequences than, the technical issues we spend all our time and energy on.

How can Simply Communicate help your team engage with current and anticipated change?

Use the contact form or email ian@simplycommunicate.co.za

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Ian Webster

From Methodist minister to Customer Relations manager in a computer bureau to HR Manager in a newspaper printing and publishing company. Now focussing on training and developing people, people-management consulting and writing and editing.

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