Change is the only constant thing and it is necessary in an organization or business. However, it can often take a toll on the employees so that they start to suffer from ‘change fatigue’ - increased stress, exhaustion and decreased commitment among employees. Over time, change fatigue can lead to burn out among your employees. Change fatigue is actually a form of ‘passive resignation’ and can have serious implications on your business.
Here is how to reduce and combat change fatigue in your team.
1. Facilitate the change from the perspective of the entire team
Many organisations launch and manage change as individual projects within departmental boundaries yet this is not the reality of change. Change, even the smallest changes, sends ripples into other areas of the business. It may be a change specific to one area of the organisation but it will eventually affect the whole team. Stop managing change as a collection of projects but as an interconnected journey that the organisation is taking. If your plan is going to cause ripples, reduce the number of changes and increase your employees’ ability to handle change.
2. Begin at the end with every change
When initiating change of any size, start with an intended outcome that is understood and meaningful to the people affected. You cannot initiate change without having a clear outcome and communicating this outcome visibly to those who are involved. Outcomes expected from changes should be documented and communicated in a clear, concise and concrete way. It not only reduces the risk of change fatigue but also sets you up for success.
3. Build the change leadership strengths
Don’t separate leading and managing change from general operations because then leaders will easily overlook the impact of day to day leadership and management of the organisation on how the employees’ response to change. How you lead and manage when you are not implementing change will either improve or hinder your employees’ ability with change. To solve this problem, it is necessary for you to know the leadership and management activities that strengthen your organisation’s ability to handle change and those that do not. With this knowledge, you can do more of those activities that strengthen your capabilities and do away with those that weaken them.
4. Expand the involvement of the recipients of change
When implementing change, it is only a specific group of change management team that is involved in the planning and implementation. The others affected by the change become the recipients of the plan. This approach is not effective because there is no active involvement of the change-recipients. Therefore, they begin to feel like the change is being done to them and not with them. To solve this problem and avoid change fatigue, expand the level of active involvement in the areas and levels affected by the change.
Change fatigue is something you want to avoid in your team because it will slow down your progress and ability to accomplish your goals.
Collagis is committed to helping businesses like yours to optimise workforce and organisational effectiveness. We'd love to hear from you to share how we can help you drive effective and sustainable transformational change.