How Can Organizational Change Management Affect Culture and Employee Behavior?
Is your organization going through a major transition?
For many employees, organizational change can feel fraught. Individuals may have concerns about their job security, alterations to their tasks, and how their everyday lives might change.
With the right organizational change management, though, you can keep office culture and morale afloat. So how do organizational changes impact employee behavior and company culture? Read below to find out.
The Change Will Impact People’s Lives
Organizations are constantly looking for new opportunities to improve processes and streamline the way business is done. This is necessary but requires considering how the individuals that make up the organization will be affected.
Decisions made will have a trickle-down effect on employees.
Should your company rebrand or merge with another, employees face another set of problems. They will have to get used to the new organizational structure, new coworkers, and impacts on their day-to-day obligations. If they feel unprepared or overloaded and the stress of changes and new duties become overwhelming, they may become resistant or frustrated to a level that they may even seek out other employment.
So, one of the first considerations before implementing organizational change should be thinking through how the changes will affect your workers. Coach your managers on how to handle employee questions. Come up with possible solutions ahead of time. Inviting employees to express their concerns in writing or in one on one meetings can also be beneficial.
People May Feel Like Problems Aren’t Being Addressed
Listening to employee concerns has an additional benefit: you can get feedback on what people think isn’t working. Managers and leadership are less involved with the intricacies of all of the positions they oversee which can be problematic when they are unaware of issues that can be resolved. However, employees may hesitate to address issues to their supervisors for the fear of appearing that they are complaining rather than genuinely attempting to solve a problem.
This sort of stalemate can cause workers to get frustrated and can impact morale. If your employees learn about the organization changing but feel core issues haven’t been addressed, they may grow dissatisfied. So, if you’re organization is going through a transformation, make sure you’re listening to your employees.
Organizational Change Can Cause Confusion
The larger the company, the greater the opportunity for confusion and miscommunication.
Transitions often come with a set of tasks for certain key workers to complete. If these instructions are not communicated in a clear manner, employees may become confused and frustrated. Over time this can have a negative effect on morale.
To make an effective transition, you should ensure everyone is on the same page. This starts with having a sound communication plan in place and checking in with employees to make sure they understand the intended changes. Encourage communication and feedback if they feel they don’t have the right resources to be successful.
Organizational Change Can Alter Company Culture
A positive work culture contributes to employee retention and job satisfaction. Having a sense of fulfillment from work is important for morale and can cultivate positive company culture.
Sometimes, changing organizational culture is necessary. If you’re rebranding, for example, you might need to adopt a more professional or casual office atmosphere. Some employees will thrive with the change. Others may find it non-conducive to their work style. Having discussions on what the employees’ needs are can be beneficial to providing insight on whether the intended changes are in the right trajectory for the organization as a whole.
If Change Happens Too Quickly
Changes to your company’s hierarchy and culture can disrupt the social support systems people have put in place. Often, these systems provide a stable foundation for your employees. If they’re disrupted in too sudden a fashion, people might become more resistant to the change or even feel left behind.
Where applicable, consider implementing changes over time to allow adjustment and being able to address unexpected problems that may arise.
Providing Support Helps
Stressful transitions become easier for employees to handle when their leaders support them.
When you announce the changes, offer to meet with your workers to discuss their individual roles. That way, they’ll feel you care about them. If you only talk about what’s changing without providing support, some people may feel like there’s nowhere for them to turn.
Want to Prepare for Organizational Change?
Does your organization need help with creating and executing a change management plan? Having experienced professionals in change management consulting can make all the difference in helping your company achieve its goals.
Ready to get started? Contact Zolicity today!