- Embrace flexibility to be agile and responsive, which are a must in today’s business environment.
- Foster a positive workplace culture by valuing and respecting each team member and providing opportunities for professional growth.
- Communicate effectively by being clear and concise, listening to feedback, using multiple communication channels, and being available to answer questions.
- Focus on solutions instead of on the problems and encourage your team to brainstorm and develop a plan of action.
- Prioritize self-care and offer resources to help your team stay motivated and resilient during times of change.
Change is the only constant in the workplace. But sometimes, changes may be so sudden and significant that they can profoundly impact your team’s morale, productivity, and overall well-being. Whether it’s a new company policy, a merger or acquisition, or a pandemic that forces a shift to remote work, navigating workplace changes can be challenging. As a business professional, it’s essential to understand how to build a resilient team that can adapt to these changes without losing steam. This blog post will explore some tips on how to do just that.
1. Embrace Flexibility
Changes in the workplace often require flexibility and adaptability. Be open to new processes and ways of doing things, and encourage your team to do the same. Embracing flexibility means pivoting when things don’t go according to plan and being open to feedback and suggestions. Flexibility allows your team to be agile and responsive to change, a vital skill in today’s fast-paced business environment.
For example, Singapore’s SMRT Corporation, a major public transport provider, faced a severe disruption when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Ngien Hoon Ping, the SMRT CEO, was forced to restructure its operations and introduce new systems to ensure the safety of its passengers and employees. By embracing flexibility, SMRT could quickly adjust and keep its services running.
2. Foster a Positive Workplace Culture
A positive workplace culture is critical to building a resilient team. This means every team member should feel valued and respected, regardless of their role. Encourage collaboration, teamwork, and innovation, and provide opportunities for your team to grow and develop professionally. Positive workplace culture also helps to minimize stress and burnout, which can be prevalent during times of change.
A good example is Microsoft Japan, which implemented a “Work-Life Choice Challenge” in 2019 to promote work-life balance. The program encouraged employees to take five consecutive days off, and the results were overwhelmingly positive. Microsoft Japan saw a 40 percent increase in productivity among participants, proving that workplace culture can significantly impact employee morale and productivity.
3. Communicate Effectively
Communicating effectively is one of the most effective ways to build a resilient team. When changes happen in the workplace, keeping your team informed is essential. Be transparent about the reasons behind the changes and what’s expected of them. Allow your team to ask questions and share their concerns. Effective communication helps your team feel valued and empowered, increasing productivity and morale. This may be easier said than done, so here are some communication tips:
a. Be clear and concise in your message
Ensure your message is clear and concise whenever you need to communicate changes or new instructions. Avoid jargon or overly technical language, as this can be confusing and off-putting.
b. Listen to your team
Your team members have valuable insights that can help you navigate changes more effectively. Listen to their ideas and feedback, and make sure they feel heard.
c. Use multiple channels of communication
The workplace is filled with different personalities and preferences, so you should use multiple channels of communication to reach everyone. This could be through email, conference calls, or face-to-face meetings.
d. Be available to answer questions
Make sure you’re always available to answer questions and provide support. Having someone reliable that the team can turn to during challenging times helps create a sense of trust and togetherness.
4. Focus on Solutions, Not Problems
When changes happen, it’s easy to focus on the problems that arise. However, this approach can lead to a negative, unproductive work environment. Instead, focus on solutions to address the challenges presented by the changes. Encourage your team to brainstorm solutions and implement a plan of action to move forward. This approach empowers your team and helps to build a culture of problem-solving.
5. Prioritize Self-Care
Finally, change can be stressful, so it’s essential to prioritize self-care during these times. Encourage your team to care for themselves physically, mentally, and emotionally. Consider offering resources to support their well-being, such as mental health days, stress reduction techniques, or opportunities to connect with colleagues outside of work. Prioritizing self-care helps your team stay healthy, motivated, and resilient during workplace changes.
Navigating workplace changes can be challenging, but building a resilient team can help you weather the storm. Effective communication, a positive workplace culture, flexibility, solutions-focused thinking, and self-care are all essential for building resilience. As a business professional, you are responsible for supporting your team during times of change and helping them adapt and thrive. By following these tips, you can build a resilient team ready to tackle whatever changes come your way.