Change management is the process of dealing the sudden alterations or shifts in an organization’s goals, practices or technologies. The dynamic eco-system of today has made effective change management imperative. The one major objective of change management is to device and applying strategies for dealing the change, minimizing the disruptive effects of change and help individuals to cope better with change. These strategies includes following an organized format to ask for change, also ways of reacting to the request and processing them up.
It is natural for human beings to work with regular practices and routines; hence, our first natural response to change is resistance. But it is also impossible for any organization to remain static, thus professionals must learn to cope with change effectively.
Change management training activities encourage employees to reduce their resistance to change and make the most of new opportunities. Usually played at the start of a meeting, these activities break the ice to open communication about the impending change, anticipate their concerns and understand the usefulness of getting on track.
Here are some engaging and insightful training activities that can make change management effective.
One simple activity is to asking the employees to cross their arm, after sometime the employees are asked to cross the arms the other way round. Then they are question about why did the second time they felt uncomfortable even though the action remains same. This enables to make a point that minor alterations are looked as a change even when the action and process remains same. This enables them to understand that some necessary changes seem to be uncomfortable at the start.
The employees are asked to imagine themselves as alien in the planet and their task is to find unusual social practices in human world and try explaining the reason behind those practices to their mates in the imaginary planet. The point behind this activity is to make the employees understand just because some practices are followed over a period, does not imply it is the most suitable practice and one cannot resist to change by giving such justification.
The employees are instructed to sit anywhere they want, later they are asked to shift places. They are asked to observe their own feelings about switching places. And stretching over a minute let them sit wherever they want. It is to be observed where they sit back again. The same process is repeated once more.
Then a discussion is followed highlighting our inner resistance to change and how moving away from a comfort zone could be helpful. This could also be used to address the fear of unknown and then one could tell the employees about any upcoming changes.
This is a procedure of using a set of questions to understand the inner feelings, thoughts and resistances of the employees when encountered with a change. This also has questions acknowledging points like what changes are required, how differences are handled, etc.
This sets the stage for discussion about how caterpillar through time changes into a beautiful butterfly, stressing new changes could be viewed as challenges towards growth. Also sharing of experiences where coping to changes have helped employee to grow.
Four columns are made in a board and Project, Purpose, Particulars and People are written in each column left to right. Then employees are requested to fill in each column based on the following format. Project: list down the approaching changes;
Purpose: benefits of the change, its helpfulness; Particulars: details of what all to be altered; People: mentioning which group have to adapt some changes.
This enables employee to connect the four areas and understand the importance of the change and how beneficial it would be. Thus, resistance to the change would lower.
In this task, the individuals are divided into teams and assigned a task of developing ideas for a company, each of them is assigned particular departments like marketing, designing, etc. After some time challenges are posed to them like changing a group member, conveying specifications to only one member, etc. This implies the way they are adapting to the changes and still focus on the task, usefulness of the new member’s ideas, etc.