Federate employees in a dynamic of continuous transformation!

Leila Daghfous

Write a story and embody it

With transformation projects piling up, and priorities changing after a few months, employees run out of steam, or even exhaust themselves, and eventually disengage. This observation is shared by many companies. But success depends largely on the teams. It is therefore necessary to help them find themselves in an increasingly complex environment, which requires constant adaptations. The key is to offer them a story that they can cling to and rely on a leader capable of embodying it. The speech must be simple enough to resonate with all employees, emphasizing the positive aspects that can result from the change. To create momentum, it can be interesting to take inspiration from product launches. The name chosen to designate the approach can also play a unifying role.

Leave room for emotions

Change often creates resistance because it impacts everyday life and upsets the balance. It is accompanied by uncertainty and generates fear. This emotional dimension should not be hidden. On the contrary, top management must offer this mirror effect to employees. He must be both reassuring and transparent, show humility, while being able to constantly restore meaning. Latitude must also be taken at all levels of the chain of command to allow real ownership of projects. The challenge is that everyone finds their place in the transformation and that they find ways to contribute to it. Listening and understanding are therefore key elements. Such an approach cannot be satisfied with an overly rigid framework, where everything would be decided in advance, including how to communicate.

Involve employees

For employees to feel fully engaged, some companies have chosen to co-build their transformation projects with the teams. The difficulty, however, is to free up enough time for operational staff to carry out such a reflection. Building communities can be a simpler solution to implement. It makes it possible to create a stimulating environment and to rely on relays (ambassadors, influencers, etc.) to maintain engagement over time. Communication is obviously essential and must be regular, but it must also be targeted to avoid “infobesity”. From this point of view, AI can help with personalization. Different tools can also be mobilized, such as the OKR method. This gives visibility to the role played by each in achieving objectives and can facilitate alignment between business lines.

Valuing initiatives and celebrating successes

In the past, transformation projects were quite exceptional. They are now part of everyday life. To succeed in maintaining engagement despite this acceleration, we must not hesitate to celebrate victories, whether they mark the transition to a new stage or simply the unblocking of a complicated situation. While it is essential to give meaning and have a long-term vision, change can be so important that it requires gradual progress. Focusing on reasonable deadlines is often less scary. Encouraging boldness and saluting the failures of those who have dared, to learn from them, are also ways to make people want to do.

Related article: How engagement levers drive successful transformation projects?