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Ringing the changes

Ringing the changes

11/02/2016 03:00 by Shane Routley
Senior Business Analyst

Change…. It’s such a common experience, which each and every one of us goes through both in home life and at work.

Organisations go through change.  It’s common and it’s healthy, however most importantly for the people who work there, this can be a disturbing time. Every individual reacts and adapts to change in a different way, these changes don’t have to be radical, they may just be a change to how time off is requested or where the tea making facilities are (one close to my heart!). Either way it is important that the impact to others is taken into account, and I believe how that impact is managed should be a measure taken into account when looking at the success of the change (whether tangibly or intangibly measured).

Over the past 3 years Eclipse has been on a transformational change journey; moving from a consumer focused ISP to a mid-market technology provider with each and every employee striving to “make technology easy and enjoyable” through Passionate People, Straight Forward Solutions and Exceptional Experience.

I joined Eclipse nearly two years ago and have been lucky enough to be a key part of this journey, orchestrating change across all areas of the business; this is my passion although handing change outside of work is a different matter…. (When my wife moves where the coffee jar in the kitchen, this something I still struggle to deal with!)

In this blog I wanted to share some personal thoughts and advice for when you have the opportunity to go through a change programme within your organisation:

One – Listening Posts; these are commonly used as temperature checks within the organisation to get a feel from the people who are impacted by the change. The best way to approach this is to firstly map out the different teams/functions impacted by the change and look to pick-out one or two people you know from each area and simply check-in with them (I find informally works best) before, during and after the change at regular intervals. This will allow for you to get a real-world view of the impact the changes are having.  It is all too easy to only consider the views of those working directly on the project.  Don’t make that mistake, the views of those not so close to the change play a large role in the perceived success of the change project.

Two – Tell the story; it is all too easy to when you are driving change to forget that people outside of the change project team need to be taken on a virtual journey about the change in order to fully understand it.  They will have questions just like you did initially; what is the change? Why is it happening? How will it impact me?

Now comes the hard (and commonly debated) part, when to start communicating the change. Either way, my advice here is not to underestimate the change management stream of the project, start communicating little and often and use different mediums to get the message across, everyone absorbs information in different ways.

Well, I hope you found this interesting, time for me to get back onto the change roundabout.


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