Is fear of change actually fear of failure?

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7 ways to take control of change 

“Adapt or die”, “break it to make it”, “change is good”…..all scary and not very helpful  sayings that are supposed to inspire you to get on with it NOW. And it’s true that those that don’t adopt change are in for a real fright further down the line… but how do you  LEAP from willingness to action?

Innovation is great, and we are all told we should make more room for it in our organisations. However, innovation means change and we hesitate, terrified that something would go wrong during transition to bring the business in our care to its knees. In that moment we must remember that there are likely to be a few bumps in the road but accept those as necessary in order to drive valuable, meaningful change.

We’ve spent many late nights here at FLOvate bringing dead processes back to life and from that experience have pulled together  7 practical ways you can reduce the risk of change and so help bring it to your business or organisation successfully – without fear.

> Know your limits – Change is transformative not only of the system or process, but of the people involved in driving and managing it once it’s live. Is the real issue that you worry there is a skill gap? Understand your possible weaknesses and put a plan in place to reduce the risk. Embrace the challenges so you can more fully understand the system you are adopting as ideally you’ll be looking for a solution that you can grow and take forward yourself.

> Ask to see it in action first – we are most panicked when faced with something unfamiliar. If you are offered the chance to see your solution in play early on, you can then really wrap your thinking around its usefulness and how it will be applied to your business. Even better would be a working version of YOUR solution, rather than a generic walk through which is never likely to quite fit the bill.

> Don’t settle for a franken-process – Define your requirements early rather than stitch together lots of odds and ends later down on the line. Don’t expect to achieve perfection, striving for this will hinder the projects progress, but get as much down on paper in the early stages so you really do have a good idea of what your real business needs and challenges are. Line these up early on to wider commercial objectives to strengthen your resolve.

> Avoid death by committee – Get your team to buy into your vision early on and offer them a stake in its success. If you drive belief from the bottom then the users will take to it much more quickly and so ensure its effectiveness. Also, measure the change so that’s when it’s live, you can communicate how things have improved.

> Avoid shapeshifting – Define your goals and stick to your plan A. Plans Bs can be viewed as a crutch so the risk is some never fully commit. This can result in a diluted version of what you wanted in the first place, proving any critics right, thus the circle of fear continues.

> Hold your nerve as the new system beds in – it’s just taking root and as a result may throw up issues you had not realised would be there. Especially worrying if you are the owner of the original system in question, but this is the perfect chance to shake off those old ghosts that have been hanging around the system and take charge of making it right for NOW.

> Retain the power – On final delivery, you should be handed the keys so you can keep momentum and innovation moving. Your business will change and grow so you need to be able to keep up but ideally you want to be leading the charge, with a strong team behind you pushing for success.

“Don’t let fear hold you or your business back. Measure the risk and get stuck into those projects with as much energy you can muster, trusting that honesty about your challenges, remaining true to your vision and more than anything, that your experience will carry you over the finish line and into the future. “

Good luck!


The team at FLOvate are committed to empowering individuals in business that need and want to adopt new thinking for their BPM to drive innovation and ensure their organisation is kept at the tops of its game. Speak to us about how we get it done today.

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