Brandon Montoya, Consultant
Sometimes trying to improve performance means making some changes. Making necessary changes in the spirit of improving outcomes sounds simple enough. You may be trying to innovate and streamline old processes or hoping to enhance the customer’s experience. You can try and plan out every last detail of a new model. You may be thinking you have the best intentions so everything will fall into place. Being someone who has both undergone countless changes as well developed and implemented numerous changes, it is not as easy as it seems. In the end, how you handle change management can be the determining factor of the success of your new process.
When making a change, it’s important to get everyone working towards the same goal and help everyone understand the reason for the change. With change, you will sometimes face negativity, resistance, and even sabotage. Often times people are fearful of change and how the change will impact them. The fear, causes many people to not be open to change, especially when they do not understand the reason for change. To mitigate this, it is critical that everyone understand the why behind the change.
What is your vision? Once you know where you want to go, you can develop how to get there. Data is important but how you analyze and incorporate this information is key. Think of what you are wanting to accomplish. An idea could fall short when time is not taken to gather insight from the team members closest to the work. The team members are the ones that could bring forth the details that may otherwise been overlooked. Keep your team engaged by listening and valuing their opinion. They could be the solution you need to see your plan through.
While in IV-A, my office wanted to pilot a new process. The plan was to break down the silos of Intake and Ongoing. The vision was that any staff member would be able to serve any customer despite their application status. At first, it seemed it would be a difficult change to implement as many were originally not fond of change. However, much time was spent understanding the why and training on handling change. After a few months, the change was a major success. Staff understood the importance of the change and had more appreciation for the work each other did.
During implementation, you have to see the importance of follow-up. Follow-up is needed to ensure the plan stays on track. Even if things appear to be running smoothly, you want to make sure you are doing check-ins as things can always take a turn for the worse.
When you are looking at the same problem day in and day out, it may be hard to take a step back and find a solution at hand. I feel it is always helpful to get an outside opinion. For example, have you ever been doing a puzzle and all of the colors start to blend into one another. Then you have a person come and simply find a piece to the puzzle you missed. I feel that that happens in the workplace as well. It is great to have fresh eyes look at a process and help execute a new change in an organization.
Even with learning some tricks of the trade, change management can be difficult to put into practice. Grays Peak Strategies starts by putting this immense concept into four simple steps; Identify the Change, Take time to Assess, Develop a Roadmap, and Implement. Grays Peak can help you understand the concepts and work towards bringing these concepts to life by designing a change management approach and strategy specific to your organization and the change you are implementing.