How to Implement Change in the Workplace
Follow these 7 steps to increase your chances of success.
Posted Dec 23, 2018
If you see an injustice at work or want to grab your boss’ ear to change a particular process or protocol, the key to success is in the delivery of your message.
The suggestion must appear constructive and positive and should not come across as a complaint. The last thing that any employer wants is a whiner. However, an employer will eat up a constructive suggestion, especially one that will save the employer time and money and increase market share.
Below, please find seven easy steps to take to increase your chances of successful workplace change. Regardless of the specific situation or of your particular industry, most of these steps should apply.
- Check with HR to see if there is a formal process for submitting suggestions for change. If there is, then follow protocol and provide concrete suggestions that way. If there is no set process in place, then request a meeting with the decision maker(s) within the organization.
- Make a compelling reason for the meeting. Say something like, “I know a way to increase productivity by 10 percent” or “I have a suggestion to help us make more widgets while reducing employee turnover.”
- Be able to share the problem and solution in three or four sentences. Get to the point quickly. “Here is the problem. Here is the solution that will fill the gap. And, here’s why I know it will work.” Then, after you get the attention of the decision maker, provide more detail.
- Bring as many facts to the table as possible to best support your position. Complete a SWOT analysis, sharing the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats related to the current process and to the proposed change.
- Clearly demonstrate why the change will benefit the company. In addition to dollars and cents, many leaders are interested in corporate social responsibility and social media presence.
- Practice before presenting, and try to anticipate questions so that you are better prepared with responses. Don’t be afraid to say that you need to research the answer to a question. It’s better to do so than to misspeak or provide inaccurate information.
- Ask when you can follow up about the suggestion or how soon it might be implemented. Offer to be a part of the change process by serving on a committee or spearheading part of the change.