You know how it is; you carefully plan your trip, select the appropriate clothing for your trip and pack light. Then you arrive and find that the climate has changed, and you no longer have the right clothes. You can no more rely on your business environment staying the same than you can the weather.
The ability to anticipate business change and then plan for it, and having the flexibility to be able to adapt quickly to unanticipated business change, are two of the most important skills to have in business today.
How many of these businesses are as big as you remember?
- Eastman Kodak
- Sun Microsystems
- Blackberry Ltd formerly Research In Motion (RIM)
Some of them are still hanging on in there. But those that are, have finally learned that you ignore change at your peril. None are what they used to be.
Business change for SMEs?
As a smaller business you have an advantage in that it is easier, less expensive and takes less time than changing the direction of a big business. For example, organisational change takes less time and is more successful, because you have fewer people to involve. You probably have easier access to your stakeholders too.
For more information about how we can help you –
However big or small your change, having a mentor or coach will help you build skills and confidence in your ability to do it effectively.
To stay ahead of change, you still need a good set of goals. But you need to know your risks and your plan needs to be flexible.
New ideas are essential to keep you ahead of the curve. Having an innovative culture and a way to help you generate a steady stream of good ideas will get you started.
Once you’ve decided what you are going to do, you need to create a stream of open communications to fire up your staff, customers and investors with your enthusiasm. If you are proposing any organisational change, how effectively you communicate will be key to building confidence in your team and stakeholders.
Some of your team may be more reluctant than others to change what they do. People can find business change quite uncomfortable, especially if any organisational change is involved. They may also be inexperienced at generating new good business ideas and need persuading that they still have control.
Everyone should be familiar with analysing the business risks and dependencies, as this helps to dispel some of the discomfort of uncertainty. Some of the project methodologies are becoming more agile, but the key is breaking activities into short projects or activities with clear deliverables; something that your stakeholders will appreciate too.
Email me more information about managing business change or call Jacqui Hogan on 01494 680997.