The reasons for resistance to corporate changes can be the General unwillingness of people to change, misunderstanding or rejection of the company’s development strategy, lack of necessary information, and others. In order to overcome the resistance of staff to organizational processes, management needs to take a comprehensive look at the process of preparing changes, to anticipate the reaction of people to them, and to develop a plan of measures to prevent these actions. The task of management is to predict how strong the resistance will be, how to minimize its manifestation, and to cope with it. It is necessary to overcome the resistance of employees from top to bottom.
The Plan Details
First of all, it is necessary to attract top managers of the company, middle managers, then especially valuable specialists, carriers of expert opinion, and informal leaders of the organization. Only then can the management team connect everyone else. There is also a need to form and train a group of leaders of changes. Typically, it includes company managers who are interested in the amendments carried out by management, considering them as an opportunity to realize their career ambitions, ready for their active implementation.
The main task of such leaders is to increase the loyalty of the company’s employees to the ongoing changes, involve them in the reform process, break resistance, overcome inertia, fear, and panic. Resistance can be reduced more secure by informing employees about what is happening with the company while providing information from the successful side. Here are a few rules of well-built PR during significant changes in the internal affairs of the company.
- The need and importance of reform must be well-argued. The information provided to the staff should answer their questions. Management needs to find clear and convincing arguments in favor of changes for each employee to help overcome fear and uncertainty in the future.
- Information must influence the intellectual and emotional levels. Clear arguments in favor of the need for change will help employees to take a fresh look at their company, to reconsider its functioning. To do this, the management can show employees the figures, graphs illustrating the state of the company today and what it should be tomorrow. Personal meetings with management will help to influence the emotions of employees, where it will explain the inevitability and necessity of reforming the organization.
- Information on the reform should be timely and available to all staff. It is difficult to inspire confidence in an employee who learned about the changes in the company, not from the original source, but, for example, from the public media.
- Use as many channels of information as possible: corporate media, Internet mailing lists, forums or virtual clubs, e-mails, meetings, lectures, discussions, conferences, and others.
- The PR campaign should be well organized. It is not enough to declare once: “We have big changes! Join us!” Advertising should take place throughout the reform process, especially at times when some of the changes have already been successfully implemented.
Coercion is also one way of suppressing resistance, although it is the most anti-social. It is usually expressed in the form of threats from management to use punitive measures against employees if they resist transformation. This method can be applied in the fight against the resistance of low-skilled personnel because changes in their behavior can occur quickly and under the influence of the General mood. However, attempts to directly force the intellectual “elite” to follow new rules and standards can lead to its loss.
Involving employees in the reform of the organization means not just sharing existing solutions with them, but engaging them in the process of creating a plan and strategy, and supporting their initiatives. Organizational change is impossible without changing the consciousness of the people who make up the organization. Management can develop the skills of employees, help them adapt to the new environment. The development of training programs for better system thinking, business vision, leadership, teamwork skills, and management of stressful situations is significant during the reforms in the company.