Mar 31, 2014 | Posted by Ben Thompson
Human opposition can be a major problem when trying to change the current state of a business. Even though we have collected all of our data and displayed it in a clear and concise manner getting people to change the way they work can be an exasperating process. The root of peoples resistance to change can be for a number of different reasons. It’s a feeling security to have a set habit, to know what you’re going to do each day. The bottom line is that it comes down to fear, the fear of the unknown and when people are fearful, they are likely resist the source of their fear.
So, to help your employees overcome this fear of the unknown get them involved in the process of change. This is a key element of TPS kaizen methodologies called nemawashi. One creates an environment where change is not only acceptable but encouraged. When you get an employee involved in the process as an expert of their position you reap the benefits not only of their knowledge of their position but you also break down that fear of the unknown by keeping them in the loop. So involve everyone effected by the change in the effort of improvement.
Another great fear of change is failure and blame. Before a change takes place you must study the problem, examining each possible solution and analyze the possible results for all processes affected. To not plan ahead is to invite failure and discourage your team for wanting to try to change and improve processes in the future. However, failure is inevitable, so upon the emergence of a failure don’t blame the team. Instead, blame the process, the system, or even yourself (management/leadership), because in the end all that matters is regrouping the collaborative efforts of your team to come together, analyze the problem, and develop a solution. Always remember to,