When it comes to digital transformation, consulting – and adjusting to – the latest developments is the key to business success. There, we’ve said it. Now, moving with the times and staying on top of technological changes may sound simple. After all, you had no problems changing over to the new iPhone, right? Unfortunately, implementing and managing a company-wide change is an entirely different ball game. Not everyone likes adjusting to an unfamiliar system or platform, and it can be a challenge to get each and every employee on board. But by following this four-step approach to change management, you’re sure to facilitate the process, as well as making all employees feel comfortable and included. What’s not to love?
1. Plan, Plan, Plan
Proactivity pays off, especially when it comes to an impending digital transformation. Consulting the entire management team on key questions, such as what the change should entail, how it will affect employees, and what the timeline should be, is always the first step of a successful initiative. Talking through and finalising all of the nitty-gritty details can be time-consuming, so be sure not to rush this stage of the process. After all, the more information you have, the more transparent you can be – which, in turn, is bound to make a positive impression on your employees.
2. Get the Word Out Early
Along with having a detailed plan in place, you’ll want to inform your workforce of the imminent transformation as early as possible, giving them plenty of time to adjust. Nothing’s more likely to result in chaos and discontent than springing change on your employees, so relay the message at least a few weeks beforehand. In addition to sending an email to the entire company, in which you should clearly define the change and lay out a timeline, it’s worth giving teams a personal introduction to the process – or appointing a few enthusiastic managers to help you out. This will not only make your employees feel respected, but will also give them the opportunity to ask questions and gain a better understanding of how the changes will affect their work.
3. Train Up Your Teams
All too often, companies don’t realise just how challenging it can be to embark on a journey of digital transformation. Consulting experts on how to best use and customise your systems is crucial for understanding the full potential of new technologies. In fact, you may even want them to implement the systems under your direction, which can save you time, as well as ensuring that everything is set up properly. What’s more, consider offering training courses for your employees in order to give your employees a better overview of the technologies’ functionalities. These can either be offered by knowledgeable, in-house staff, or by experienced change management consultants. Either way, it’s essential that no one feels like they’ve been thrown in at the deep end.
4. Be Open to Constructive Criticism
When you’re managing a digital transformation, consulting your employees on how they’re coping is an absolute must. While it’s easy to simply let your teams get on with it after you’ve trained them up, it’s important to present yourself as approachable and open to questions and criticism. Resentment may fester below the surface if you’re not willing to listen and respond to feedback, which has the potential to lower the company-wide morale and decrease productivity. So, lend an ear and a helping hand!
Change management can be a long and challenging process, but – if carried out correctly – you’re certain to reap its benefits across your entire business. From streamlined tasks to more transparent communication, there are myriad advantages to digital transformation. Consulting this four-step approach is sure to get you started on the right foot!