As we shift into new beginnings post-COVID, the workplace environment is going to be an entirely different space – physically, mentally and emotionally.

Like it or not, we need to understand that the traditional methodologies around change management and implementation which have made us successful in the past may not necessarily make us successful in the future.

One thing we can be certain of in business is uncertainty and in this constantly changing world, we need to create a positive work culture, starting with our leadership teams.

An organisation’s biggest asset is its people and with them, they bring their hopes and fears. Any transition plan needs to be inclusive and your leadership team needs to be fully committed to engaging the hearts and minds of the people.

How do you do this, especially when leaders themselves are managing what the uncertainty means for them?

The key is to develop a strategy which captures the entire voices of the organisation and engages them in a very particular and uplifting way. I use Appreciative Inquiry with my clients, which is a highly inclusive and engaging process.

Here are some simple steps to help you think about change differently:

  1. Start with identifying your organisation’s strengths and capture what’s working and the key aspects of your culture you want to retain.
  2. Collectively visualise the new desired cultures, how will it feel to work in the new environment?
  3. Consider the infrastructure required to create that desired work culture – what are the systems, processes and protocols for how you will engage with each other and your clients?
  4. Communicate, communicate, communicate – how do you involve people in the changes so that it is not done to them but they are actively involved in implementing the change.
  5. Finally, project plan – milestones and actions, sponsors and who is responsible for what?

Purpose drives performance. The world has changed. Not only have the needs of your customers, your suppliers and everyone that touches your business changed, so have of course your leaders and the people who work in the organisation. Purpose inspires followership and guides the thoughts, actions and behaviours of the people – the asset of the organisation.

So what is the new purpose of your organisation and what does your team look like as a result of the external changes?