Leading Change in Uncertain Times, Part 2

September 22, 2021

Hope you are relaxing and enjoying your Labor Day weekend.

Neutral Zone  -  Continued from last week

Trust is essential; if your team trusts leadership they are more willing to follow you and move forward. If trust is missing, people may resist and want to revert back to the old ways. Years ago, when working with a large healthcare firm, there were rumors of possible layoffs. Leadership was not forthcoming in addressing the issue. A very talented, high potential, midlevel leader chose to find another job outside the organization because he didn’t trust the messages coming from above and needed job security to support his family. Had he stayed he would have been secure. Lack of trust and communication were really the culprits that caused him to move on.

New Beginnings - Leaders generally see the big picture and move through the three phases quickly, especially when they’ve been involved in creating the future state.  People must process through the Endings and Neutral State before they can dive into New Beginnings. Individuals must regain their energy to face new challenges. How are you supporting them? Now is the time to paint a clear vision of what the future will look like if you haven’t expressed it already. Work collaboratively to define new roles and practices and explain why the changes are important. Translate the changes into new behaviors. Make time for reflection. Focus on and share early successes. Celebrate progress, even small wins! A team that has come together through a fair system of furloughs, pay cuts, lack of raises, etc. to create a new beginning may be stronger and more committed than before COVID-19. They need to see who they are now and who they are becoming as a team and organization. Your role is to create the mental shift from how things were, to how things will be, even if the new beginning is only short term and next month there will be another new beginning. This is often the case in this everchanging uncertain time. Encourage and integrate new attitudes, values, identities, and ways of being to motivate the team in the new direction. Increase engagement and buy-in by involving them in decision making, when possible. If you need a consultant, executive or team coach to assist on this arduous journey, please reach out, Joanne@RisingStarsLLC.com Picture Credit to Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change by William Bridges

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