Organizational change – Employee mindsets must change first

mindsetIn doing some research recently, I found an interesting reference related to organizational change. It said, “Chasing behaviour change without addressing mindsets is like playing Whac-A-Mole in an amusement arcade”.
One of the key and usually the first methods to change employee mindset on a wide scale is to tell a compelling story. This helps people to understand not just the facts about the change you’re planning but also the thinking behind it. Here’s why.
• A story conveys emotions as well as facts
• People need to understand not just the facts about the change you’re planning, but the reason and thinking behind it
• It helps to answer the questions: what are we changing, and how do we get there?
• The story can transmit meaning as to why the change makes sense both for the organization and for the individuals in it
• If a story is not provided for the employees, they will create their own version which might not be accurate or favourable
• Because individuals seek consistency in their thoughts, opinions and beliefs, a story provides a picture to which they can compare any other statements that you might make later.
• Your story gives you an opportunity to describe the impact that the changes will make on the customer, their working team, society and to them personally.
The leader(s) telling this story should make sure that they explain why they are personally committed to the change, and what they need to change in their own thinking and behaviour to make it happen.
Start the storytelling from the top down. The CEO tells the senior team, the senior team personalizes their version and tells the next level down, and so on, until all employees receive the message. It can’t hurt for all employees to hear the CEO’s version too. Remember, the simpler the message, the more likely it is to be consistent and easier it is to control and manage the communication.
R4C advisors have experience to make sure that you do this process right the first time.

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