Top Tips for Motivating People During Change

The rapid pace of change means that inspiring people and giving them what they need to succeed has never been more important.

Here’s what you might consider when developing and delivering change to people through learning, communications and change management:

Make it meaningful – Make the move from ‘this is what you need to do’, to ‘this is why we are doing this’ and ‘this is how we plan to do it and this is what it will mean for you’.

‘Why’ is always more inspiring than ‘what’, giving you the chance to weave in the big picture. This speech by Simon Sinek confirms just how powerful ‘why’ really is. His theory? People buy into why you do something not what you do.

Align everything from Learning to Engagement –  Avoid the common pitfall of making the learning all about the technology. Every time you connect with people is a chance to build bridges and get your message across and get their feedback. Every aspect of delivery should be connected, from PPM to change management, to learning to communications and engagement.

Key tip for this: Consider scenario based learning because it will help people connect what they do every day to what is changing. They can see how their job might be made better.

Allow for reflection and questioning – If the learning and comms is facilitative rather than directive there will be more interaction and conversation and people need  opportunities to get involved to stay motivated. It helps if the facilitator is comfortable if the workshop or learning session goes in unplanned directions, because this is when it gets really relevant and interesting for people.

Test your assumptions – In 1960, Douglas McGregor identified a set of management assumptions, Theory X and Theory Y, about staff motivation.

Managers with Theory X assumptions behave as though they think their staff hate working, avoid responsibility, lack ambition and need controlling and direction.

Managers with Theory Y assumptions think people appreciate encouragement, seek work place fulfilment, are creative and assume responsibility in the right environment.

Theory Y thinking brings out the best in people so it’s worth thinking positively like this when communicating during change and encouraging middle managers to support their people during change.

Celebrate wins and encourage early adopters to be positive role models. Always highlight the milestones clearly as it gives people a sense of being on a journey and makes everything seem a bit more winnable.

What tips do you have for encouraging and motivating people during change?

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