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Managing Change with Emotional Intelligence 2

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We sometimes find businesses resorting especially to hiring consultants on account of associated efficiency they bring to the table where the implementing of critical change initiatives is concerned. Though several other factors responsible for this, I wonder though if this trend is somehow connected to the lack of requisite competencies by business managers to implement a full-fledged change driven project?

Our typical response to resistance to change initiative is that people are simply stuck in their old ways of doing things and couldn’t be bothered to leave their comfort zones even if their very survival depended on it. Could this assertion be inaccurate? To achieve success with change initiatives, I believe it is imperative to start from the beginning – understand and acknowledge the culture prevalent on ground then proceed to ascertain the popular perception driving [or likely to drive] resistance to your change proposition. This is imperative considering that people’s emotions are driven largely by thoughts and perceptions which ultimately drive actions. Most business leaders would choose the route of coercion to propel their change efforts – because that’s the only way they know how. Problem is that this technique has more down sides than benefits. The implication of the attendant reactions to the pressure can be substantially grave for business and for engagement levels. Managers ought to learn to be aware of employee's emotion movement, be able to understand it, then direct their communication accordingly. Associated communication efforts will be aimed at addressing the perceptions and/or ideologies driving probable resistance to the change effort; of painting a picture of a viable future significantly better than where they are currently and which would be worth all of their time and effort. Recognizing emotions in others is a critical competence in achieving basic interpersonal skills, such as empathy. People who have empathic awareness are accustomed to spot employee's needs and wants. And by extension are more inclined to dealing creatively with prevailing resistances. Managers who insist on by-passing people’s emotions and seeking to achieve their aims solely with rules and power, jettisoning the gaining of genuine cooperation can only go so far and their relevance and/or success will most definitely be transient. Another vital path to consider is the need to deliberately focus on increasing learning agility within your team and across the organization. We find for example that older business entities are often held up in the past and would typically remain in that state except some ‘outside force’ propels them in the right direction. Often they learn the hard way. This does not have to be so.

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We are a Productivity & Learning Company. We help individuals & organizations identity & curb behavioral barriers to achieving set objectives. Through a selection of processes as Productivity Audit, Consulting and Learning interventions, we help our clients sieve through productivity related fuzziness, unproducitive motion and/or tendencies. Our approach is all encompassing, integrative and trackable.

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