Change. We have all been there before. You get to work on Monday, and there’s new stuff all around…new laptop…new desks…fresh faces. You do not know how they got there, but it is weird…and you most likely do not fancy it.
While this scenario is a mild example of change in an organization, it is very discomfiting when it happens. You were not consulted in anyway, it just happened. This is a recurring theme in mostly every form of organizational change. According to a 2019 Edelman report, only 38% of employees who have experienced workplace transformation say that their employer communicated effectively about the change; 36% say their employers were honest about changes employees would face.
So, what is organizational change?
Well, it can be described as the alteration of certain aspects (operational, culture or resources) of the company, most times carried out to boost productivity, and maximize profit. Change, like they say, is the only constant, and at some point, every organization must reassess the way it runs. While this is inevitable, it can be extremely beneficial if, as an employee, you can exploit it to your advantage.
Organizational change can take different forms within a company:
- Think upgrading the software on the office computers from windows 7 to window 10. Quickly adjusting and adapting to this change will nonetheless place you extremely high in the eyes of your manager.
- The company is undergoing reshuffling, people are being reassigned to different departments. Once again, quickly adjusting and adapting to this change will be beneficial for your career progression.
- A new CEO came onboard and brought his own way of doing things…guess who wins by quickly adapting!
Organizational change can be a stressful event. A 2016 Forbes survey found that only 38% of employees like to leave their comfort zone, which means that 62% either do not like to leave their comfort zone or do so only occasionally. For the vast majority, having stress-coping mechanisms can help a lot in dealing with change.
This is where communication comes in handy.
Your manager/employer might have “slyed you” by not informing you of change within the company ahead of time, that does not mean you cannot communicate your viewpoint and how the change is affecting you. In a 2012 study by Salesforce, 86% of employees and executives cite lack of collaboration or ineffective communication for workplace failures.
Effective communication helps the company reach its goals and targets much faster. Misunderstandings between you and the company gets resolved faster, and by communicating, it is easier for you to see why change was necessary from the organization’s perspective.
Be open to it, keep an open mind. Change has a way of benefitting both the employer and you, the employee, if you are open to it. You get to learn new skills, update antiquated techniques, and scale up efficiency. Big, big pluses for you. Yes, it disrupts the way you used to do things, but opening your mind helps you in the long run and exposes you to skills that you can use to leverage for a bigger paycheck!
On the other hand…
If you ever feel overwhelmed, and you feel that you cannot live with the change, then it is best to know when to leave. Being disengaged at work is more detrimental to your mental health than it is a problem for your organization. Picture increased stress levels, depression, and lethargic workplace attitude…yes, definitely not the ideal employee.
There is no shame in leaving if you cannot adapt. You recognize that the organization is no longer a fit for you, and you move on, keeping your reputation intact, and your options open. There are plenty more opportunities for you out there, do not waste your time being unhappy.
Organizational change can be overwhelming when not managed effectively, which is why companies tend to organize trainings before and after change has been implemented to help soften workplace tension. More so, organizational change is an ongoing process, and not a one-time thing so prepare to continuously adapt. Dinosaurs will always go extinct.
At UnoCasa, we are committed to offering the best man management training money can buy. We have over a decade experience handling organizational change. We are good at what we do…just ask about us…or you could just contact us (08086481872). That works too.