When I'm involved in major organizational changes I invest a lot of energy to get the messaging right. Key people are consulted, potential fallout is examined and controlled for as much as possible, and endless versions of "the message" are scrutinized to ensure nothing is overlooked.
This Is Important
The effort to get it right is something that I take very seriously, and I expect those on the receiving end of the message to appreciate and understand those decisions.
Except...as with all major organizational changes...I've had lots of time to process the impact and am now "ready" for it to be implemented. But that doesn't mean the hundreds or thousands of employees who are hearing about the changes for the first time are as ready as I am.
Yet, for some reason leaders are often frustrated when "the staff" don't immediately "get on board" with the changes being announced.
Are you kidding me?
It's Actually Not About You
How long does it take for us to "wrap our heads around the changes that must be made?"
We struggle, argue, throw little hissy fits, and eventually come to an understanding that hard decisions sometimes must be made.
The one thing absolutely necessary to process change is time.
When our arrogance gets the better of us...as if every word that comes from our mouths is like the Emperor addressing the masses...we have failed.
When we expect the team to simply accept with a positive attitude and continue doing our bidding without thinking, asking questions, and fully understanding...we have failed.
When we are annoyed that the team is not giving us positive reinforcement to make us feel better about the changes we're implementing...we have failed.
How About You
We have one job...to lead effectively. Falling into the trap of our own cult of personality as the absolute truth is nothing short of a disaster.
Give your team members a chance to understand, ask questions, and wrap their heads around the change that you've given yourself a chance to fully understand. They deserve the time you gave yourself, right?
I'd love to hear from you.