The pandemic set off a chain of events that added a measure of volatility – if not a lot of stress – to most people’s lives: supply chain interruptions, rising prices, the “great resignation,” technology shifts, hybrid work, and more.
In other words, it’s still a VUCA world.
VUCA is a simple acronym, coined in 1987, to describe fluctuating conditions. A Harvard Business Review article calls it a catchall term for “Hey, it’s crazy out there!”
Let’s break it down:
V = Volatility: things are unpredictable, and change happens fast
U = Uncertainty: present conditions are unclear and the impact on the future is unknown
C = Complexity: multiple factors are contributing to confusion
A = Ambiguity: There’s a general lack of clarity
With all this going on in the “outside” world, how can leaders address changes required inside their organizations without adding to the stress?
These times call for organization, planning and preparedness. The practice of Change Management provides the structure that allows organizations to change, survive and thrive in the face of external forces.
Through a disciplined change management approach, organizations can develop sustainable solutions to minimize disruption during times of change. And it’s the leader’s job to bring awareness of the change, and clarity and order to the change process, for the greater organization.
Key steps in the change management process include:
- Aligning leaders around a single vision for the future, as well as the strategy and plan to get there
- Empowering leaders and managers of people to drive the change
- Equipping the workforce to do their jobs in new ways
- Engaging stakeholders early enough so they understand the change and its value to the greater organization
- Integrating the change into business as usual
Supporting an organization as it goes through all the steps of even a modest change process helps build resilience as they navigate new ways of working. Organizations that work to build change competencies in their people will, over time, mature into change-ready forces with the capacity to handle faster, more complex and more interdependent change with greater agility and resilience – a decided competitive advantage as change continues at its rapid pace.
Our experience consistently shows that taking these steps makes change more meaningful and sustainable for all involved – even small steps can help move the dial.
Notion helps organizations deal with their internal changes every day and we have seen the impact of external forces. Our best advice is: The crazier it is “out there,” the more you need to manage changes “in here” strategically, empathetically and professionally.