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How Can Leaders Play an Inspirational Role in Change Management in 2023

  • By Diana Kawarsky, MA, CCP
  • January 17, 2023
  • 221 Views

change management training for leaders

As business leaders, we constantly seek ways to motivate and inspire our teams. Change management can be a difficult process, but if we take on an inspirational role, we can make it much easier for our employees.

In this article, we’ll reveal what organizational change management is, the top change management trends for 2023, and why some companies are failing at change management. We will also look at the impact on those companies, how to identify and fix employee dissatisfaction with these changes and, finally, how to get the proper skills to navigate your company through change.

What Is Organizational Change Management?

Organizational change management is a process designed to guide organizations through the transition of change. This change can be related to introducing new technology, altering the company’s organizational structure or adjusting culture and values to better respond to customer needs.

Effectively managing change can ensure a smoother transition and prevent potential roadblocks during implementation. It’s important that everyone working within an organization understands change management principles so that there is a unified approach during times of change. Change management training plays an important role by helping executives and employees develop the necessary skills required for successful change initiation and completion.

What Are Some Change Management Trends in 2023?

Businesses can expect to see a lot of new trends with regard to change management in 2023, including:

  • New Technology: Applications like learning management systems (LMS) that will integrate training into these platforms for more efficient learning and allow leaders to expedite change when needed.
  • Increased Acceptance of Change: As millennials and younger generations move into leadership positions, the days of “we’ve always done it this way” mentalities are slowly falling by the wayside.
  • Economic Factors: With the threat of recession, companies need to pivot to retain customers who are thinking of cutting expenses. Leaders need to be able to shift focus quickly.
  • More Data to Make Decisions: As customer data becomes more robust, opportunities arise that can help ignite change geared to your customer needs. Leveraging a company’s current offering to its customers’ newest requirements is key to successfully managing organizational change. 

Why Are Some Companies Failing at Change Management?

Some companies fail at change management because they don’t have the proper resources or skills to deal with changes coming their way. They may be too slow to adopt new technologies and processes, lack employee training or communication channels, or not have a clear plan of action. Without these elements, it can be difficult to successfully manage change.

Another issue is that some companies may not be willing to make the necessary investments to ensure a smooth transition. If a company doesn’t invest in proper training or resources, it won’t be able to effectively manage changes or implement new strategies and processes.

Finally, many companies fail at change management because of a lack of leadership. Without strong leaders who are willing to own the process, it can be challenging to implement changes in an effective and efficient manner.

How Does Poorly Executed Change Affect Businesses?

When companies fail to properly execute change management, they put their business at risk. Poorly executed change can lead to a lack of employee engagement and motivation, low productivity, and missed deadlines. It can also have a negative impact on customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Furthermore, when employees don’t understand why specific changes are being implemented, they are less likely to accept them and may even resist the process. This resistance can lead to a breakdown of trust between employees and management, which can further hamper organizational growth and development.

Poorly executed change management can also have serious financial consequences for businesses. If a company fails to properly manage changes, it may find itself spending more money than it needs to, as well as missing out on potential growth opportunities.

How Can Businesses Identify and Fix Employee Dissatisfaction with Changes?

It’s important to understand that employees may be resistant to changes in the workplace, either because they are uncomfortable with something new or because they are afraid of the impact these changes may have on their job roles. It’s essential to identify and address any issues that arise due to a change before it becomes too difficult to manage.

The first step is to clearly communicate why the change is necessary, how it will benefit the organization, and how it will affect the employees. This communication will help show that the company values their opinions and is taking their concerns into account.

Next, ensure that any resources or training needed to implement the changes are readily available. These resources can include taking specific soft skills courses and providing tutorials, webinars, or one-on-one instruction to those who need extra help getting up to speed.

Finally, provide employees with channels to express their concerns or questions regarding the change. This feedback can include employee surveys, focus groups, or open forums where employees can discuss and debate the changes in an environment free from judgment.

Why Are Good Leaders Important in Change Management?

Having solid leadership when an organization is going through change is crucial to reducing any friction during that change.

  • Leaders are involved in planning and collaborating with changes at the initial level. Leaders should also be able to identify any potential issues and obstacles that may arise during the change process and provide guidance on how best to manage the transition. Strong leaders are also key in leading by example and setting a positive tone for employees when changes occur.
  • Leaders can motivate employees to adapt to changes and offer the required support. They should provide clear direction and a long-term vision to help employees understand the organization’s objectives and inspire them to work towards them.
  • Skilled leaders can identify and address employee resistance with positive reinforcement tactics and work with executives to solve any problems the team faces.
  • Leaders become the bridge between higher management and executives, which is crucial to successfully executing the change management process.
  • Transformational leadership can also help to avoid change fatigue in employees. By navigating the team through many changes, the employees won’t feel frustrated or de-motivated by the organization’s changes.
  • Leaders are responsible for taking employee feedback that helps them to make required changes in the strategies and planning to make it successful. 

Need Help Learning Change Management Skills?

In what appears to be a volatile and eventful 2023, navigating through organizational change successfully is crucial for any leader. At The Soft Skills Group (TSSG), we believe that strong leadership is essential for dealing with the uncertainty and challenges of organizational change.

TSSG offers leadership training for managers to help them deal with organizational change by teaching them the soft skills needed to deal with employees and upper management.

Contact us today to learn more about how you can improve your change management skills.

Diana Kawarsky, MA, CCP

Diana is President of The Soft Skills Group Inc., and a senior training & development professional with over 20 years of experience in delivery, design & consulting with Fortune 500 companies, Universities & Colleges in Canada, USA, Europe, and Asia. Read More