Never Waste a Good Crisis ** HR Change Management

van Orsouw17-06-2020 6:16 PM

Reading time : 5 mins

Now it is time for all of us who navigated this pandemic safely, to face new challenges that awaits us. COVID19 changed all our lives in ways than we can imagine. I began this year in HR by focusing on building critical skills and competencies to meet the digital disruption that was widespread. However, COVID-19 drove an unprecedented transformation in business and ways of working in a very short period of time. The way we lead people, the way we manage our workforce and the tools have to be changed now. In this brief post, I try to share some areas of major change and some key actions that can help this journey for you.

Being a business leader or an HR person during these times is not for the light hearted and require out of the box thinking, resilience and leadership. Your business might have survived the last few months, but if you want to build it from here, it will require some well thought through, concrete actions.

What is happening around us?

It’s important to understand the large shift that's happening in consumer behavior and how business is done. Understand how your customer...
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van Orsouw03-04-2018 10:34 AM

Adaptability vs Vision in Leaders

Change is an ever present feature of today’s world. This is especially true in the world of business. The complexity of doing business can give rise to a tension between a company’s vision, and the organizational adaptability that the firm needs to adopt in order to maintain that vision. With the pace of change increasing, a variety of leadership skills are urgently needed, as well as a strategy to determine which skill to use for a given challenge.

In 2010, IBM’s CEO study reported that the rising rate of complexity associated with the fast paced nature of technological innovation and connectedness, and the uncertainty associated with both, was the biggest challenge facing organizational leaders around the world. Among the many factors analysed in the study, creativity was selected as the main one to allow organizations to successfully navigate the complexity of the modern world. As physicist Amory Lovins commented, “We’ve got 21st century technology and speed colliding head-on with 20th and 19th century institutions, rules and cultures.” Such a situation necessitates adaptability and change.

This is not to say that adaptability is the sole factor in successful leadership for the 21st century. Jeff Childs, Chief Human...
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Together Abroad06-03-2018 9:03 PM

There are few things in life more certain than this: Change is inevitable. At some point, we all have to face transformations in our lives, our circumstances, or at work. We can even say, from a bigger perspective, that change is always present. The gentle old man that brings our newspaper does not come anymore, the trees from the street are cut out modifying the landscape, or our aunt unexpectedly dies. In any given situation, change can bring about uncertainty and concern, but can also be an opportunity to grow.

Business organizations experience change all the time, especially during financial crises or global instability, when companies need to adjust to new conditions. These may be unsettling times for employees because they do not know what to expect. Mergers, acquisitions, restructures, or strategy transformations can produce anxiety and fear, undermining confidence in long-term perspectives. So, how can an organization successfully navigate through these challenging, stormy waters?

Engagement is the answer. Employee engagement determines high performance and creates value for any organization. It involves the emotional (focus, motivation, passion) and behavioral (strive to give an extra effort) reaction to a given work environment. And it is this quality that is most at...
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Together Abroad02-10-2017 12:05 PM

Methods that can successfully motivate employees to increase productivity and the quality of work are not always easy to come by. One method used by organisations is bonuses, which are awarded to highly achieving employees in the hopes that they will continue to produce well, or even improve further. Within the last few years, more organisations have begun relying on incentive pay to increase employee performance. What is more, some organisations implement full performance management systems. These systems help to determine just how big a bonus should be for high achieving employees, and they are usually used for continuous bonus compensation, rather than just one-off rewards. Other organisations implement year-end bonuses or profit-sharing bonuses as an incentive. No matter the bonus, the type, its size or what form it takes; bonuses can both positively and negatively affect employees and their performance.

What Bonuses Really Do to Employee Performance

The general misconception about bonuses is that they will always effectively increase employee motivation, thus enabling high performance. A study conducted by Willis Towers Watson found that only 50% of the studied senior managers considered bonuses to be an effective incentive for improving employee performance. It seems that the main problem is...
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Together Abroad03-05-2017 1:59 PM
When organisations execute changes companies face challenges, as it is not always easy to convince the employees – particularly the elder employees. The easiest way to get rid of these employees is through retirement. Under some conditions this might be a beneficial way for both employer and employee. However, to ensure a sustainable solution, organisations should carefully take into consideration the involved legal, social and economic consequences.

Changes in a corporation – like solving financial issues or entering into a new market – might confront the corporation with its employees, because changes stand for uncertainty and may carry disadvantages for the employees. Such disadvantages include terminations, change of work mechanisms, and programmes or changes of working time models. Employees that are not open towards change can be overly critical against the process, and may even hinder it. Often elder employees whose works are very routinized are seen as the big hindrance. In addition, elder employees are usually not so easy to intimidate as they are close to their retirement. Thus, companies should always be careful about how to communicate these changes to their elder employees. In the best case scenario, they get their employees on board in order to make...
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Together Abroad06-03-2017 10:42 AM
Organizational change is part and parcel of any organization. The adoption of new business practices, or promising new technology, represents examples of changes that occur all the time. Those involved in what is known as OD (organizational development) will know how much resistance they can face when they try to get people to adopt promising new technology, or new decision making processes. Models exists that help to clarify the steps that can be taken to minimise the task of change management. Two of the most common include Lewin’s 3-step model, and Kotter’s 8-step model, which will be discussed below. Both models attempt to address the question: “How does successful change happen?”.

Lewin’s model is deceptively simple, as it involves only 3 steps. These are known as ‘unfreeze’, ‘transition’, and ‘freeze’. The first step is about trying to lessen the forces involved in maintaining the status quo, and changing the current institutional attitude. The status quo can be considered the equilibrium position, which naturally wants to keep things as they are. Unfreezing can be achieved by, for instance, increasing the forces that drive behaviour and attitudes away from the status quo. This can be done by making people realise the need...
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