To Change or Not to Change?

Any time that a new manager is hired, organizations expect them to shake things up. Unfortunately, most managers tasked with shaking things up make the mistake of enacting change for change’s sake without taking time to learn about the organization first. Maybe some changes need to be made, but most of the time old processes and policies get thrown out just because ‘that’s the way they used to do things and we’re doing things differently now.’ Anyone challenging these changes gets labeled as someone who doesn’t ‘get it.’ While change is vital and necessary in any organization, blind change made just to show the higher ups that things are being shaken up is often counterproductive.

Why would this be counterproductive? The biggest reason is that the employees who are least likely to leave after a shakeup are the ones who are most likely causing the problems to begin with. Chances are, you’ll never make things uncomfortable enough for them that they will leave. Meanwhile, the employees who could have provided a stable base for the organization while new hires are brought in are the ones who will most likely become uncomfortable and leave.

Plus, while many organizations might be bogged down because of tradition and habit, there may be valid reasons why some things are still done the same way. As inefficient or unwieldy an old process might be, if the organization’s customers don’t want it to change, it most likely won’t be a good idea to change it. Greenhorn managers won’t know this and by shaking things up without a plan, they just might cause more damage than their changes are worth.