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How do you Handle Change at Work?

We are not eating the way our parents are, we don’t follow the same fashion trend as that of our parents and we are not following the same technology the previous generation imbibed, and ironically a few things pertaining to our parents are history now.

Change is difficult yet the only constant; It is also universal that change is inevitable. In spite of innumerable proofs, when it comes to the processes that we follow or the strategies that we implement at the workplace, we are not very ready for even a slower, smaller change.

Isn't it?

When we try to accept the change, a sudden jerk also leads to disappointment and hence the reluctance strikes again.

Factors that indicate difficulty in Handling Change at Work

  1. More you follow a process or a strategy, the more you own it. Just like we cannot leave out what we own, we tend to resist understanding and replace the old process with a new one.

  2. Office politics generally lead to group-ism. A new strategy suggested by the so-called ‘opponent group’ is by default perceived faulty by us. Rather than considering the strengths and weaknesses of the strategy suggested by them, we take things personally and respond based on our emotions towards them.

  3. As adults, once we decide to follow a process or idea, we become closed. And when that idea came from within ourselves, we tend to resist any type of defence against it. Our subconscious mind accepts only those points that support this process/idea.

  4. Sometimes, we recognize improvement areas in the existing processes. But changes in the existing processes are perceived as flaws in the previous projects. Others could even project as inefficient too. As a result, we tend to show hesitation to change.

  5. We are often frustrated by low-quality ideas that are brought up, especially by those who want to show off. During this course, we ignore valuable ones too.

Subconsciously, all these things run in mind before we bring in changes in our approaches. And so, we don’t readily accept change. True that all these effects, but when the fundamentals of growth are based on change, we cannot evolve without change; and that is where exceptional candidates differentiate themselves from mediocre performers.

So, how can we handle change at workplace? What to do?

  1. Remember that change is inevitable. While you are following the existing processes diligently, keep an eye on what others are doing and suggesting. See if there is any advantage by inducing the new idea.

  2. Your focus should be on the ideas that are brought, not on the people who brought them. You never know - by encouraging the new ideas, if found good and appropriate, your so-called opponent group might become your ally group.

  3. Become aware of open and closed mindsets. Learn how to become open. Read books, practice the right stuff and keep yourself open. If required, take the help of a mentor/expert.

  4. Take feedback regularly. Ask how others perceive you in change management. Ask for suggestions to improve yourself.

  5. If you are an employer, create a culture to listen to ideas and suggestions across various levels of organizations. Rather than embarrassing an employee who could not bring a brilliant idea, encourage/suggest to them how their new idea can be made better.

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