Summary: Unfortunately, humans are notoriously resistant to change, even when it’s necessary for personal and professional growth. So, how do you get employees emotionally invested in your new program?
Is something missing from your culture change strategy? You’ve clarified the objectives and goals. There’s even a budget and timeline to keep implementation on track. But did you account for the emotional impact change has on your staffers? The only way to change organizational culture is to get employee buy-in. They need to know how change affects their work duties and roles, and why your company is undergoing a transformation in the first place.
6 Innovative Ways To Get Employees Involved In Cultural Transformation
1. Kick-Off Events
Schedule a live event to get employees excited about the cultural transformation and put their minds at ease. This gives them a chance to ask questions and alleviate doubts so that they can focus on the task at hand, which is to re-align their perspectives and get ready for the shift. They can also meet new team leaders or learn about new company policies that pertain to their job roles. Try to keep group sizes small so that everyone has the opportunity to speak and engage with the host. You can even start with a larger event and then assign breakout rooms based on departments or individual training needs.
2. Company Values Newsletter
This email newsletter goes out every week to keep employees up-to-date and spotlight a new core value. You can also get creative and include staffer stories to up the emotional ante. For
example, a sales employee contributes a real-world example of how they exhibit integrity and honor on-the-job. The newsletter is a great way to spread the word about future training events since you’re able to include helpful links to tie-in resources and promote the benefits of your cultural transformation webinars.
3. Real World Demos
Reading about corporate change and how it affects individual roles or tasks is one thing but seeing it in action gives staffers the chance to mentally process change and mimic positive
behaviors. For instance, a video demo could walk employees through the task or show them how to display certain skills in the workplace. The benefit is that they have a visual example to
follow, which also helps them avoid common pitfalls. If you’re trying to cut costs, ask top performers to reenact tasks and then use an editing tool to produce how-to videos and upload them to your LMS library.
Change happens at the employee level, but how do staffers know which areas to work on in order to align with your new organizational strategy? The secret to successful cultural transformation training is frequent self-assessment. Employees start with a pre-assessment to identify their current strengths and weak points, which helps them choose the best activities for their personal needs. Then they wrap everything up with a final exam to see how far they’ve come and disclose emerging skill or performance gaps. For instance, they may take the same simulation before and after the course then compare results.
Gamification is more of an overarching strategy to motivate employees and help them track personal progress. For example, employees can earn badges and points for every course they complete, or for building crucial skills that fit into your new corporate culture. Another game mechanic to consider is leaderboards, especially if you opt for a more competitive approach. Staffers move up the board for standout training performances or perfecting new work habits. Just make sure to clarify guidelines so that employees know how to participate, what’s expected of them and why your gamification strategy supports organizational change so that you get staffer buy-in.
6. Feedback Sessions
The last item on the list is feedback sessions. Think of them as virtual round tables where employees can share their ideas and thoughts informally. There shouldn’t be any pressure or
agendas to follow. That said, you may want to propose a topic beforehand so that employees can prepare their questions and comments. For instance, one feedback session may be all about the new dress code policy. Staffers should be ready to discuss their personal opinions about the policies and explore the pros and cons. They might even suggest changes that better suit your new brand values. Make sure to record the session for later reference. You don’t want to spend the whole meeting jotting down notes and not participating in the conversation.
We’re not suggesting that you convert employees into brand cheerleaders. However, a successful cultural change strategy can turn them into advocates who rally for your cause, whether it’s playing a more active role in your collaborative Clan culture or rising to the challenge and taking calculated risks for your Adhocracy approach. The most effective way to change organizational culture is to emphasize the importance of employee involvement. This allows staffers to overcome the emotional hurdles associated with new management or work duties and achieve their true potential.
Many organizations overlook the emotional ramifications of change, such as how new team leaders or company protocols affect staffers’ stress levels and on-the-job productivity. Download Time For Change: How To Launch A Successful Cultural Transformation Training Strategy For Your Enterprise to ease employees into the transition and retain top performers.