As a manager, dealing with change effectively is key when looking at managing stress levels and fostering positive mental health in the workplace. Taking time to assess how organisational change (large or small) is managed and communicated in your workplace is fundamental to assess how you can make things better for yourself and your team.
The Heath and Safety Executive standard states that employees should indicate that the organisation engages them frequently when undergoing an organisational change.
In order to meet this standard of proficiency, here are the areas to focus on:
– the organisation provides employees with timely information to enable them to understand the reasons for proposed changes.
– the organisation ensures adequate employee consultation on changes and provides opportunities for employees to influence proposals.
– employees are aware of the probable impact of any changes to their jobs.
– employees are aware of timetables for changes.
– employees have access to relevant support during changes.
Some other key elements to support you in managing change in the work place are:
- Ensure all staff are aware of why the change is happening – agree a system for doing this.
- Define and explain the key steps of the change.
- Ensure employee consultation and support is a key element of the programme.
- Establish a system to communicate new developments quickly.
- Agree methods of communication (e.g. meetings, notice boards, letters, email, feedback forums and frequency (e.g. weekly, monthly).
- Provide a system to enable staff to comment and ask questions before, during and after the change, e.g. for staff who want to raise their concerns.
- Review unit and individual work plans after the change to ensure objectives are clear and workloads are appropriately distributed.
Author: Sarah Speziali, Chief Therapist at InsideOut