In our previous blog post, we discussed about taking the first step toward change and why it is important to take this step. In this post, we will focus on how managers can take this step.
There are three prerequisites for change:
- Awareness: Awareness for the need to change that comes from within.
- Desire to change: Once you are consciously aware that you need to make a change, you have to decide whether or not to actually go ahead with the change.
- Capacity/skills: When the decision to make the change is supported by the desire to change, you can then put together an action plan to make it happen.
Exhibit A: Wendy passed away due to diabetes. She was overweight and although family members urged her to lose weight, she would not listen to the advice and insisted that her flab was flesh or muscle. As a result, she did not lose a single pound until the day she passed.
It is human nature to resist change, especially if they are comfortable with what they are used to. Change is scary, and more often than not, painful. In order to gain awareness for change, observe your current situation and ask yourself questions such as what are the advantages and risks that are involved in this change? What will the company gain and what will it lose?
Exhibit B: John was diagnosed with gout. Although he is aware of the excess weight that contributed to his medical condition, he is still adamant of not wanting to change his diet. Maybe he will get to a point where he finds the desire to change, maybe he won’t, but awareness on its own is insufficient unless there is desire to change.
Once you have realized that change is necessary for your company, you have to make an informed decision to make the shift toward something better. This is what we call the desire to change. It is a decision that only the individual can make when he or she understands that the gain from change outweighs the fear of stepping out from his or her comfort zone.
Exhibit C: Susan is trying to lose a fair amount of weight. She is restricting calories; but still consumes white bread for lunch, thinking it is a good diet food. Those who have successfully shed pounds know that white bread is a definite no-no when trying to lose weight because it represents refined sugar that causes insulin spikes and subsequent hunger pangs. This illustrates that awareness and desire need to be coupled with the right knowledge or skill (depending on the circumstance) before change happens.
In order to make the change, the individual has to be equipped with the capacity to physically take action for a better outcome. From fixing prices to hiring the right people, you need to do everything in your power to make the change.
Change may not be comfortable at first, but there are many resources that managers can use to alleviate the pain of making the change. Metamorphic Management is an example of a free resource site that houses a collection of proven management practices and tools that enable companies to take the next growth step.