Managing Change

Managing Change

Managing Change in your personal or professional life

It is human nature to fear change. Neuro research has found that our brain reacts to uncertainty in the same way it reacts to an error. This explains why our initial reaction to change is resistance. However, we cannot always avoid change as it is fundamental for growth and success. 

 As necessary as it may be, fronting change can cause a lot of disruption to individuals and corporations. If you are about to encounter a change, resist the urge to resist and take a moment to contemplate these 15 ways to manage change.  Remember

“There is nothing wrong with change, if it is in the right direction.”- Winston Churchill.

1. Understand What You Can Control 

It is unlikely that you will have complete control but ask yourself if there is anything (even the smallest thing) that you can do to feel more in control. For example, your company is downsizing, you will be moved to a new building  or asked to work from home where your workspace will be significantly reduced. You do not have control over this, but you can sort through and reorganise your workspace. LOOK FOR POSITIVES. 

2. Be Proactive 

Be proactive about anything that is within your control. Start by being CURIOUS and do some research, talk to others who have had to make a similar change.  Make a list of OPTIONS, then choosing what ACTION(S) is needed to get results. The more prepared you are the less overwhelmed you will feel.  BE PROACTIVE – ASK QUALITY QUESTIONS.

3. A positive Attitude Changes Everything 

There is always a silver lining, no matter how small. It is very easy and almost natural to dwell on the negatives, but this headspace will cause resistance which is counterproductive. Take a moment to really deliberate a positive in your scenario, this will take a weight off you to help your mindset as you navigate your change. A lot of the time it is not as bad as it first seems, we just fear the unknown. If you talk to others that are being negative, be strong, state your case you for every negative you need to respond with 10 positives.  BE CURIOUS.  

4. Accept And Acknowledge

Whether you like it or not, the change is going to happen. Recognising and accepting the change is the most productive way to move forward. It might not be comfortable to begin with, but you will get used to it. The sooner you accept the change the smoother the transition will be. STEP INTO YOUR TOMORROW.

5. Familiarise And Be Flexible 

Begin familiarising yourself as soon as possible. This does not mean you need to be completely across the change overnight. If it is in the workplace, take action to be a part of the change, introduce yourself to the new manager, visit your new office, take a photo of yoru home working space and share, look over the new business model- the sooner you are familiar, the sooner you will be comfortable. Understand that not everything is going to go to plan and recognise that there will be challenging times and feelings of uncertainty and frustration. Be flexible throughout the transition process and adopt an agreeable attitude- this will help you manage the teething phase.  ALIGN YOUR HEAD, HEART, GUT in what you do and how you respond.  DEMONSTRATE YOUR BRAND – who you ARE. 

6. Take One Systematic Step At A Time

Approach change slowly but steadily. Changing too much at once will leave you feeling overwhelmed. Prioritise each action that must be taken to achieve the outcome and work down the list. Remember Rome wasn’t built in a day.  BE PROUD OF YOURSELF.

7. Go Easy On Yourself 

If you are undergoing a big change in the workplace, be patient with yourself. No manager will expect overnight success during a large transformation program. To reduce your overall stress levels, accept that it will take time.  Be clear on expectations from the environment vs your own expectations of yourself – are they aligned? ALIGN EXPECTATIONS. 

8. Ask Productive Questions 

Again, keeping a positive mindset is fundamental to a smooth transition. Write out all your questions, when you have finished cross out any that begin with a ‘Why’, as these are resistance questions. Put the remaining questions into two categories. The first being ‘productive questions I can ask myself’, and ‘logistic questions to ask management’.  QUALITY QUESTIONS NOT STARTING WITH WHY.*

*Why is a great word to use when in discovery phases or working with external clients or situations – outward facing.  It is not a great word to use inward facing.  Try to find another word other than why and feel the difference.

9. Communication Is Fundamental 

Keeping these proactive quality questions in mind, communicate with management, co-workers and team leaders about the change. The more you ask, the more familiar you will become, and the more confident you feel. Remember to be positive and constructive in your approach and listen without prejudice. LISTEN DIFFERENTLY and ask quality questions. 

10. Find Your Purpose 

Take time to take stock and do an audit of your experience, celebrate your skills, successes and the value you add. Don’t loose yourself during this uncertain time. EVERYONE ADDS VALUE.

11. Be Considerate 

Be conscious that the change will affect other people in different ways. Don’t get wrapped up in the politics or with those that are resisting that change. Keep yourself positive and connect with supportive peers that are embracing the change.  LIVE YOUR VALUES. 

12. Keep Up Your Motivation

Continue to do your job to the best of your ability. You will be notified if the work you are doing will change so don’t sit back and wait for direction. Don’t use the transition period as an excuse to be idle. You never know who is looking out for talent.  BE CONSISTENT IN YOUR BRAND.

13. Give Yourself A Break

It is going to be stressful and overwhelming at times. It is important to manage that stress. During the process of change, put some time aside each day to have some ‘you’ time to relax and unwind. Having something to look forward to each day makes a world of difference. I would also recommend taking a close look at your nutrition and water intake over the stressful period and trial some relaxation techniques such as meditation to clear your head.  The first 20 minutes of every day is so critical to setting the mood for the day.  THE BEST YOU IN THE BEST FORM. 

14. Seek Support 

The uncertainty of change can trigger anxiety and emotional stress in some. It is important to confront these feelings and find support in someone you are comfortable with, whether that be a family member, friend or trained professional.  RESEARCH “R U OK” this will help with questions to ask and how to respond. 

15. Remember ‘The Only Constant Is Change’ 

While it is important to accept, acknowledge and familiarise yourself with the change. Keep in mind that the only constant is change. Don’t get too comfortable with the new order, remain flexible and open to new ideas and ways to achieve.  ADATABILITY.

In finishing .. do I have a method that I follow for myself ? 

Make it clear; make it known, make it real, make it happen, make it stick. 

Ferne Eliz King

Love Life Love YOUR Life 




About Ferne

Ferne is globally recognised and called upon for quickly accelerating complex change to achieve business strategies.  Translating strategies to actionable plans, prioritisation of those actions, engagement from the right people, bringing business architecture to life or your life plan if individual and in many cases driving the change as a program director.  The bottom line is Ferne accelerates businesses or individuals to achieve outcomes and enabling that is her passion.

What's the consequence if you take no action?

“If you do the same thing today as yesterday, your tomorrow will be the same as today”.  Ferne Eliz King

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