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Capt Ron Curtis

Change is very difficult for us in all realms. We dislike change at work, we dislike change at home, we dislike change in our community, etc... Unfortunately, change is the only consistent thing in our lives, more specifically in our work lives. As leaders, managers, supervisors, and administrators it is imperative that change is communicated in advance. I agree the surprises should be left for special occasions, communication is one the most important steps to successful change. There will always be those who resist our change effors but there are many ways to get them on board; one of the primary things we can do is present them with information that increases their sense of urgency and necessity in the change. Simply showing the resistance that we need to change so we can do things better, faster, and cheaper and remain solvent is often all it takes.

Steve Roesler

Capt Ron

Wouldn't it be useful if we carried around a small notecard with only the printed reminder "Urgency" and "Necessity". It might get us into the habit of including each when we request something. And if we couldn't give a satisfactory reason for each, it's a signal to get more clarity before we ask others to do something differently.


Some employees get rattled, or even threatened, by change. It's important for their leaders to justify change. They should be able to assure employees that their standing in the organization will remain the same; if not, they can at least be honest and direct about laying off or demoting employees.

Steve Roesler


Adults want valid information in order to make decisions that will serve them well. Your comment about "they can at least be honest and direct about laying off or demoting employees" would show character, integrity, and be truly helpful to those impacted.

Brandon Mulnix

"Make it their idea"- Change seems to happen best around my environment when its their idea, even if it is not. The employees that I am blessed to manage ranges from 19-60 year olds and each group of employees have a different way of accepting change. The younger ones accept change easily because they don't have the experience of doing it other way. They have an underlining respect for management because they haven't experienced change like the most experienced. The middle era accepts the change, but likes to fight against it as well. They have heard the stories about the "good ole days" and have a little experience with past events of change. The oldest group, they just don't like change. As they look to the retirement pastures they balance the energy to change, with the energy to retire. The oldest group is also one of the most influential salesmen to the others about the change. Once they accept it the others seem to fall in line easily. Unfortunately they have seen management’s mistakes and failures in the past so they question the change the most.
The oldest group is the group that you have to sell the idea of change by allowing it to be their idea. Let them be the sales force for their idea. It’s amazing how it works around our place. I hope it works for you as well.
Thanks for the insightful post!

Duncan Brodie

Good article. In my experience the reason so many change initiatives fall by the wayside is because all of the focus is on process.

As you righly point out so much of it is about hearts and minds and showing a very clear picture of why things need to adapt or change from where they are now.

Duncan Brodie
Goals and Achievements


Some employees get rattled, or even threatened, by change. It's important for their leaders to justify change. They should be able to assure employees that their standing in the organization will remain the same; if not, they can at least be honest and direct about laying off or demoting employees.

Steve Roesler


I enjoyed reading your description of the responses by demographics. My experience has been that the longest-tenured group has already "seen it all", and that includes what works and what doesn't. The fact that they are willing to support a change, based on their long experience, is probably a good sign that it makes sense. And if you can continue to capture that enthusiasm, you're already headed in the right direction.

Steve Roesler

Hello, Duncan

Thanks for stopping by...I almost didn't recognize you without your Twitter photo!!:-)

The best example of what you are suggesting came in a large scale change meeting in NYC. My client was waxing poetic about the elements of the change process. Finally, a long-time plant manager stood up and said "Paul, just tell me what the new goal is and then let's talk about how we're going to get there. We're all committed to the company. Show us the hill and we'll take it."

Steve Roesler


In the face of new situations, adults want accurate information that allows them to make good personal/professional choices. Indeed, putting it all out there--even the negative possibilities--does no kill the change. It allows people to proceed with accurate knowledge or decide to move elsewhere because it's not perceived by them as a good match. The last thing a company wants is an employee population operating off of half-truths which will ultimately surface and damage the company, inside and out.


I would have to agree with "marktysan" some employees do feel threatened by change, especially if the reason for the change is not clearly understood. Plus we all know most people have a problem with change, even though change is inevitable.

In a company where there are thousands of employees it may not be possible to get everyone's input in a major change.

Most employees look at change from their own perspective. What will it do for me....will I gain something or lose something....will it make my job harder or make it easier.

It is mangagements responsibliy to answer those questions before emplimenting a company change. But some people will never be satisfied no matter what. Great Post and comments.


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