5 Strategies to Keep Your Business Change-Ready! Regardless of which business you are in – change is happening at a faster rate. Whether it’s due to technology, the economic outlook, or your customer demographics, things change quickly! What can you do to keep up?
Regardless of which business you are in – change is happening at a faster rate. Whether it’s due to technology, the economic outlook, or your customer demographics, things change quickly! What can you do to keep up?
Be prepared to be unprepared.
While you do your best to have all your I’s dotted and T’s crossed, changes happen so frequently now, it’s often impossible to stay on top of them all. Many changes are complex. Sometimes when we make changes to our business, we are unsure how things will roll out.
Be prepared to roll with the punches. Don’t stay too stuck on a final outcome. Be willing to be adaptable and flexible to be able to change quickly. Letting your staff and customers know that you will be there with them to help navigate is often the best type of communication people can receive during change.
Validate your instincts with data.
While you may have a hunch that your customers aren’t engaged in the change, go out and start talking to people. Track the qualitative feedback you get. You can turn qualitative data into quantitative data by tracking keywords.
As an example, if you’re tracking what you are hearing and you’ve tracked how many customers you’ve talked to– keep track of how many times staff say “I don’t understand”. You can then say “70% of the customers I talked do not understand my new product.”
Analyze big data through digital technology
Change is driven in part by new and emerging technology. Technology, such as artificial intelligence (AI), is poised to become commonplace in most businesses, leading to better data collection, the automation of repetitive tasks, and the ability to make decisions with immediate access to real-time, in-depth information.
Map out how new technologies like cloud storage and AI, can simplify and enhance the flow of information both inside and outside of your business. Keep an eye on Bitcoin and cryptocurrency. It’s coming quickly. I just saw a Bitcoin ATM the other day!
Be specific on what will change
In order to bring your customers or staff onside with change, you need to be very specific on what new aspects of the change will affect them. Whether the changes will be procedural, require additional skill development, or a change to the way they are thinking, adjusting to changes such as new technology won’t happen overnight.
This is why you need to take the lead in helping them see the end result or the outcome of the change. If you can’t see it, they won’t be able to see it either. Be very specific and tangible on how you might expect your customers to think, feel, and behave with a new technology.
Be clear on what the impact will be
When change occurs, we often try to “sell” our change to our customers and staff to get them on board. Even if you try to motivate them by promising streamlined systems, better efficiencies, and reduced waste down the road, customers will invariably be more concerned with what direct impact the change will have on them in the short term.
To solve this, address the impact by looking at the benefits of the change as well as the impact on the customers and staff experience. Impacts that are clearly communicated can lessen the fear of the unknown.
Above all, it’s important to manage the expectation that you cannot adapt to all these changes. If you’ve gotten this far in your life, you can easily handle the changes in your business. You can do it!
Gregg is driven to change the way we think about change. Gregg is a best-selling author, inspiring speaker and award-winning expert in the fields of leadership, resilience and change. Gregg’s expertise has been featured internationally on TV, Radio and in numerous online publications.
With a solid background in change management, Gregg has worked extensively in the US and Canada and spoken hundreds of times at conferences and led sessions with Fortune 500 clients in sectors such as finance, insurance, retail, real estate, health care as well as numerous public sector clients.
Over 25 years ago, Gregg was part of the ground breaking team that opened the first wave of Starbucks stores in Canada.
In addition to leading organizational change initiatives, he focused on behaviour change with one of the most challenging groups: prisoners in federal penitentiaries!
Gregg holds a Master’s degree from the University of Leicester in the UK, with a focus on organizational psychology, leadership and performance and is an Associate Member of the American Psychological Association.
Gregg is the author of Ready, Set, Change…AGAIN!
Get in touch with Gregg:
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