Management of Change – Latest research part 2 of 5 – Change Burn Out

“Change is hard because people overestimate the value of what they have—and underestimate the value of what they may gain by giving that up.”— James Belasco and Ralph Stayer Flight of the Buffalo (1994)

Continuing the outcome from the Corporate Executive Board webinar, this article is on four categories of change success and measuring the impact of the changes. This also impacts change in the personal environment.

The Four Categories of Change Success are:

1. FIT: Improving the Intelligence: This involves id’ing key driving forces; understanding key trends; assessing current performance; and evaluating current competencies and performance

2. Focus: What are the current performance goals and how to make them clearer; what are the key risks of the change; change plans; what feedback would you want to ensure the change is successful

3. Friends: Understand team objectives, concerns and objections; how to include key parts of the organisation and third parties; how to ensure key stakeholders are fully engaged and on board

4. Future: what are the quick wins; how to celebrate these; managing the change initiatives and driving the performance of the organisation through the changes.

It is nice to see that the core elements of change have not lost their meaning over the past few years. One of the most interesting aspects is around stress. And how that impacts what happens.

The fact that stress harms performance; whether the change is work, social or life related; will strike a chord with everyone. There is a correlated impact for people that are stressed in terms of their performance, to a degradation in performance of at least 9%. The behavioural impacts include:

  • Belief in the “work”
  • Mastering new Things
  • Taking Enjoyment in the Activities
  • Adapting to new Systems or Processes
  • Putting in the Extra Effort
  • Looking for Better Ways to do Things
  • Helping Peers / Colleagues

The impact of the stress is mostly felt under the surface in terms of the person’s emotions and behaviour including:- Confusion; Doubt; Loss; and disorientation. These do not – unless you understand the correlation – lend themselves to the fact that the person is stressed, but boy-oh-boy are they.

I will leave you with the following statistic…..

“It takes the average person, more than two years to recover from a major change”

Think about a major change in your life: marriage; a new child; divorce; redundancy; a new job; moving to a new part of the world, etc , etc.

Just sit for a moment and reflect. If you can remember the “moment” the change was announced and then the total time for the change to effect, I would wholeheartedly agree with this statistic. A two year recovery cycle. When you consider the level of change in an organisation, this is probably the key reason why people suffer from “change burn-out”

The next article will discuss the impact of multiple changes, how to deal with the changes and practical support you can develop.

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