How to Handle Change in the Office

How to Handle Change in the WorkplaceOne way to make sure an office runs smoothly and that everyone works efficiently is to establish a routine. A routine can be put in place by setting standards, having a consistent set of expectations, and not deviating from policies and procedures. However, things happen—a corporate merger, a change in leadership roles, downsizing, etc.—that make change inevitable. In our last post we discussed change as it pertains to individual team members, but in this post we want to discuss ways to handle changes that occur on a larger, company wide scale. If you’re a leader in your office, helping your staff to transition smoothly is important. For tips on how to handle change in the office, read on.

Team Building Activities

One great way to help your staff transition through the change in the office is to organize and facilitate team building activities. Team building activities can range from anything as intense as a ropes course (if this is appropriate for everyone on your team) to something as simple as a game of charades. Team building activities can be work specific—such as brainstorming office ideas together—or just fun, such as having an office scavenger hunt that’s divided into two teams. Before deciding on your team building activity, assess your company’s specific goals as well as what your staff needs most. If tension is high and the transition isn’t going smoothly, then something more relaxing might be in order. On the other hand, if people seem excited about the change, but a little nervous, a more work-focused activity might be appropriate.

Exercise Patience

Change can be frustrating and trying for everyone, and as an office leader, you might be getting fed up with the person who keeps forgetting that office policy now requires a 45 minute lunch breach rather than an hour long one, or that reports now have be handed in on the second Friday of each month rather than the first Thursday. Whatever it is, keep in mind that people adjust at their own pace, and that everyone makes mistakes. As your office transitions, remember to be patient with your staff. If a new policy is forgotten, remind nicely, and always give positive reinforcement when a staff member does something awesome.

Be a Model for Positive Behavior

If you’re feeling stressed about the new owner, the fact that the office is downsizing, or that you’re switching to a four day work week instead of a five day one, don’t let that stress show. You may not realize it, but your staff looks to you as a model, and as such, it’s important that you display positive behavior. If you behave kindly, act happily, and remain upbeat, chances are that your staff will do the same. A stressed out boss leads to a stressed out team, so put on a smile, and save your frustrations for after the day is over.

Office transitions can be stressful, but there are plenty of things you can do to help your office ease into the new swing of things. Follow these tips to get your team through the rough patch as quickly as possible. Not all change is bad: try to stay positive and look to the future. Contact us today and let us help strengthen the core of your team and help you be ready for any change that may come.

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