People Don't Resist Change!
We hear all the time that people resist change. It’s also what we typically hear when speaking to senior executives of older companies. You know why? It’s because in these companies’ senior managers want you to change the way you work, but you know it’s not in your interest to change. Hence, we say, people don’t resist change, they resist being changed!
It’s rare for senior executives to think through why the change is good for their people. They don’t think through the answers for the most important question in the minds of their staff; “What’s in it for me? Instead, they assume that what’s good for the company, or for them, will be good for staff down the line. This is a mistake and therefore it’s no surprise that their proposed changes are met with resistance.
Why should someone work harder, or put in more effort when they will not directly share in the rewards? Why should they help the company to their position redundant when not offer a better role?
Too often leadership teams push their executives “you need to be more efficient” or “work smarter” but they don’t support this effort with changes in work practices or new investments in the equipment of technology. Then senior executives often want staff to share in the pain when times are tough but are very slow to share the rewards when things are going well. It’s when this happens over a long period of time that executives take on that “glazed-eye look” at meetings and town hall gatherings. We call this a trust deficit.
Why is it then that start-up and entrepreneurial companies don’t suffer the same fate? Well, its because in these organizations honesty and transparency is the norm. Even job loses are explained in an open manner. In the situations that I have been involved in, I have not left it to executives from the HR department to deal with the staff.
My experiences are the reason that I am so passionate about Entrepreneurship and why I feel, with urgency, that large companies need to adopt entrepreneurial practices and regain the mojo they have lost to bureaucracy.