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Attention Leaders: 3 Tips to Handling Change

A famous person once said change is inevitable, except from a vending machine. Only problem is, vending machines have now changed so even that’s not true!

Pause for a moment and think about your normal first response when someone shares an imperfect idea or a potential change.

If you are like most people, you listen to what they say and then reflexively point out any concerns or reasons why the idea wouldn’t work as stated. Sometimes that may be the needed response, but much of the time it’s better to fight that reflex and have some substitute initial responses on your menu. With that in mind, here are 3 Tips to Handling Change:

1. Be less quick to point out QUIC (Questions/Uncertainties/Issues/Concerns)

How’s that for wordplay! And by the way, not much starts with K so forgive the license I took with spelling! There is absolutely a time to point out issues, but you probably don’t need to start there within a split second of someone finishing their sentence.

2. Respond with these 2 words more: “Great thoughts.”

Especially with people under you in an organization, they may not be asking you for a detailed cross-examination of why their idea wouldn’t work or be cost-effective. They may just want to be heard.

3. Have this thought more: “How could this work?”

You might substitute your first response on the outside, but on the inside make sure you pause long enough to truly consider the benefits of the potential change. It’s easy to let a saturated calendar keep us from thinking outside the box and finding a needle in a haystack of ideas.

Change really is a constant in today’s world, so let’s be leaders who navigate it better, not only with a more optimal first response but also with the right mindset.

*This is a sample of some of the content covered in the Teamalytics Handling Change team workshop.

Dr. Chris J White is the Chief Science Officer at Teamalytics, and in each edition of Growth Guide, he will leverage his coaching of over 10,000 executives and his Ph.D. in Statistics to bring you actionable insights to help with the people challenges in your workplace and life

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