All change...please? Ready for change research 2017

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Global Edge’s latest survey finds out what the UK workforce really think about the impact of change at work.

With Article 50 being triggered just over a week ago, and the ‘unknown’ that is Brexit looming heavy on the horizon, it’s not surprising that change (or more importantly, the impact of change) is back on everyone’s lips.

Brexit however isn’t the only thing that the UK workforce are concerned about. Our world is rapidly changing, as is the way we work, so it's important to pause and reflect occasionally on how that can impact on productivity.

The latest Global Edge survey, ‘Ready for change?’ (April 2017), has discovered that cost-cutting, Brexit, redundancy/restructuring, economic uncertainty and the talent / skills gap make up the top five areas for concern by the UK workforce.

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So how do these concerns impact on the performance of organisations (especially their leaders and employees)?

Well, a concerning two-thirds of the UK workforce said that going through a period of change at work has a negative impact on their productivity and, equally worrying, over half do not believe that their organisation can support the current pace of change.

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Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn, last week received a storm of conflicting responses when he posted

“It's not so much that people can't change; they'd prefer not to (change is hard).”

I’m not sure I agree with that statement - change need not always be hard. If there is a sensible strategy behind it, it can be positive, well received and rewarding. If, as the saying goes, “change is the only constant”, then the key is to ensure an open stream of communication (at every level in your organisation) to ensure success and maintain performance.

One respondent from our ‘Ready for change’ survey summed it up perfectly for me…

“Lack of communication of change makes the entire organisation come unhinged. There is no such thing as “too much communication” of directives and goals when change is upon us.”

I completely agree! When readying people for growth and change at work there must be absolute focus on communication and not just a review or appraisal when it’s too late. What do you think?

Claire KnightsComment