No one can argue that Tiger Woods, one of the greatest golfers in history, has changed the face of golf forever. And it didn’t happened by accident.
Despite his impressive talent and athleticism, Woods willfully changed his swing three times in his career, each time in an effort to improve his already impressive game. When he first changed it in 1997 after winning the Masters, he was ranked No. 2 in the world. Seven years later, after winning seven more major championships, he did it again. Then in 2010, ranked No. 1 in the world, he did it again.
Why would someone, who is seemingly at the top of their game, change what’s working? The answer simple: to get better.
Change happens in business all the time, but the results don’t always become Tiger-like. The pursuit of greatness and the effort to become better are not always rewarded with greater market share and increased profits. This unintended outcome can lead to a company becoming risk adverse and stagnant.
But change should not be frowned upon. It’s an attitude that should be welcomed, by company leadership and its people. Reward does not come without risk as we all know. To take our games to the next level, whether it’s sports or business, requires some element of change.
Here are 6 Tips for Embracing Change:
- Stay committed. The uncertainty brought on by not knowing the end result will cause hesitation by some. Don’t allow the bumps and bruises you are going to face along the way impede progress. Embrace change and don’t be afraid to fail.
- Be transparent. When people aren’t in the loop, they make up their own conclusions, which can cause frustration and a lack of clarity on the direction of the company. Executive leaders should plan all-staff meetings to update employees on the progress of change initiatives.
- Encourage feedback. Create a safe place for employees to express their thoughts and ideas about the change. Executive leaders should actively ask team members for their input. Everyone should feel heard.
- Be mindful of the ripple effect. Change in one area will effect change in another area. Make sure you are considering other department functions when initiating change and openly communicating with others about the effects of the change.
- Stick to the script. Be consistent in company messaging – this starts with executive leaders speaking the same language. When everyone is on the same page and talking about change initiatives similarly, this will erase ambiguity and create more focus with employees.
- Be flexible. Everything is not going to go as planned. Detours will happen and mistakes will be made. Quickly learn from them and move on.