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To see what is not obviously to be seen while driving the change

Have you ever noticed that we often jump into conclusions on why some of the people do not support the change that you are driving? How to see that? Well only practice makes perfect.

While studying masters in university, i have chosen to write a work and do the survey about employees cynicism towards changes in organisation. Who have ever though that it will be useful for me in the future? I did not, for sure ...

Talking about one of the reason why people tend to be less supportive to the changes in the organisation that i have uncovered decade ago in my masters thesis, was related to the amount of years that people were working in the organisation: the longer person works in the same position to the same employee the less belief he/she has that anything can be changed or improved, because of the fact, that all organisations live in repeating cycles. So here you need to find arguments of why this time this particular change will work.

"Period of how long person is in the company, competence, power and motivation - these are the things that may help you to understand your stakeholders better"

Another important element to understand your stakeholders is their motivation - why they would or would not like the change to happen. You need to be very careful by attaching the reasoning of why some of people are against of what you are proposing: it is better to have somebody that you trust, help you to assess your stakeholders and your evaluation. My recent mistake was that i have jumped to the conclusion too fast, by assuming that this would impact employees integrity in the organisation, because change would mean that the way of working that was established by the same person would be discontinued. After some of the deep dive and thinking on my own, i actually understood that there are different reasons to that:

  1. person did not trust me - it is two way street - i did not trust that person as well, so since we felt it from both sides, we were basically doomed to not hear each other

  2. person was thinking that the issues that i am trying to solve are the issues that only i see, though there was analysis done across the organisation - lesson learned - i realised that i did not actually show the results of the survey to that exact person

When you are thinking about your stakeholders and trying to understand who is the resistor and who will support you, do not forget competence element - different competences may determine of how the change maybe be understood by these people.

And finally not to forget - power: the more powerful person is, the bigger support or resistance you can get. We are talking not only about the power granted by the role or the chair that person is sitting from hierarchy point of view - there are informal leaders that can spread the good word (or bad) about the change that is about to happen.


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