In today’s business environment the imperative for change may be the result of an edict from top management, which could either be for strategic or cost reasons! All organisations have a choice to adapt to the changes. Either it can take a dramatic route with dynamic activities, or through natural evolution and adaptation! In most cases, it is the former.
Change will always disrupt normal business operations, and hence all the resistance, making the entire change management process even more dynamic if not dramatic! Any change in the business environment, will bring in uncertainty and insecurity, and to overcome the resistance to change, is where the FM professionals need to be an effective change leader.
Let’s look at some of the key aspects one needs to bear in mind, while going through any change management:
Right Balance: Any organisation would largely look at a seamless transition within the best optimum time! There will always be anxiety to get over with the change, and hence the rush resulting in cost overrun, chaos and a crisis situation, thus warranting the entire change management process to be well thought out striking good balance between speed (time), quality and cost.
Strategic Alliance: It is imperative to form a team identifying core competencies to match that with the transformations required. The team members co-creating the execution plan should be sufficiently empowered, should follow a critical process with good governance and oversight from the senior management / stake holders.
Simple Vision: Every team member needs to get connected with the vision. It should be easy to communicate and be readily understood by all parties that include the extended service partner’s team and any other stake holders involved in the transition.
Communication: A formal communication plan needs to be put in place and all actions taken should substantiate the communication. At every critical stage, regular feedback needs to be taken with the business partners and any course correction taken should be communicated back to them in time.
Empowerment: Not all actions go as planned, hence the change team should be given the flexibility to act outside the traditional structure to incorporate innovations, however without altering the end result.
Short Term Goals: To retain the initial enthusiasm, and to sustain the overall momentum, the vision needs to be broken down into smaller and quantifiable mile stones, ensuring there is continuous visibility of the change taking place.
Track Progress: The team members should always stay focused and track all progress till the very end. There is a natural tendency to get complacent or cite excuses, to slip back to old practice, making it imperative to have new matrices to measure successful implementation.
Document: At the end, as part of the change management effort, the team should update and ensure a good documentation of the comparable policy, procedure or practice update that accompanied every change adopted.
No matter how successful the change management program is, there are always things that could make the process work better in the future! It would help every organisation if all members contribute with their learnings and collate them to make a short handbook on Change Management for future reference.