Making Change Management Successful
Lack of communication will likely doom change management efforts.
by Jon Wolper
As good as many companies are at planning and setting up change, the follow-through doesn’t always go as smoothly. According to a Robert Half Management Resources survey, 46 percent of change management efforts fail during execution.
The reason? Very often, it’s a lack of clear communication.
“Communication is always the thing, for one reason or another, that seems to struggle through the execution stage,” says Tim Hird, executive director of Robert Half Management Resources. In the survey, 65 percent of respon¬dents said that communicating clearly and frequently is the most important action to take when going through organizational change.
It’s up to the organization to smartly navigate through a period of change, a process that Hird says is an “art form.” A few of the survey’s tips for successful change management:
- Communicate early but consider the volume of the communication.
- Bring in subject matter experts from the outside if needed.
- Celebrate success and reward those who are involved.
- Don’t keep employees out of the loop— that’s when the rumor mill starts churning.
The survey also found that small companies were more susceptible to failure during the execution stage. More than 48 percent of companies with 20-99 employees named it as the primary issue compared with just 29 percent of companies with more than 1,000 employees.
Hird says it’s a bit of a catch-22: While smaller companies have the ability to interface with each employee during one-on-one sessions, they may not have the internal experience or subject matter experts needed; and while larger companies have resources and the ability to put forth detailed change management plans, their size could lead to some employees feeling lost in the shuffle.