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Change – Make it Continuous, Not Chaotic

Change is essential for organizational growth. And continuous change is desired, provided it is not chaotic. Continuous does not mean chaotic; although unfortunately it often ends up being that way.

Change efforts become chaotic when…
…we launch a complex change with limited thought and pre-planning.
…we neglect to break down a complex change initiative into smaller, more digestible, change bites.
…we launch change that does not make sense and keep trying to make sense of it rather than end it.
…we launch a change initiative that is in direct conflict with another change initiative already in progress.

These are just a few reasons why change becomes chaotic.

When this happens, change fatigue sets in and/or the fear of change takes hold. The organization stops changing because employees won’t accept change. Change is chaotic. Change is frightening. Change always fails. Eventually the organization cannot thrive and compete and does not survive.

Rather, leadership’s goal is to enable for, encourage and support continuous, but not chaotic, change.

To enable for continuous change, think about planning for change as part of your strategic planning process. Change is aligned to achieving a combination of short-term and long-term goals. What better time to think about change that is needed than when you are doing your strategic planning? Have a business problem to be solved as part of achieving a goal, what changes need to be made to solve the problem? Have goals focused on development of new products or services? What changes need to be made to support the development and implementation of those new products or services?

When thinking about change that needs to happen, think about…
…what else is going on in the organization that may impact that change?
…are there internal resources available to implement the change?
…are current systems able to support the change?

If we consider change along with everything else getting done in the organization, we’ll make better decision as to whether it is the right time to launch the change. Maybe we need to hold off, or maybe we can break the change down into smaller components and begin slowly. A good change, launched at the wrong time, risks failure.

Better thought and planning around change overall enables for change to be launched that is not chaotic. Employees aren’t stressed and frustrated. Regularly incorporate change planning into your strategic planning efforts and you’ll soon find regular, continuous change is a common occurrence in the organization.

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