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Washington and Lee University Supervisory Training Program. Dealing with Change Presented by Steven B. McClure Director of Human Resources. What are some major changes that have occurred in the last few years?. How was the change introduced?

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Washington and Lee UniversitySupervisory Training Program

Dealing with Change

Presented by

Steven B. McClure

Director of Human Resources


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What are some major changes that have occurred in the last few years?

  • How was the change introduced?

  • How did you feel about the change in the beginning?

  • Do you think the same now?

  • What could have been done to make you feel better?



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Goals few years?

  • Understand why change is necessary

  • Know why employees resist change

  • See how you can overcome this resistance

  • Find out how you can successfully implement change


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Steps for Successful Change few years?

  • Denial

  • Resistance

  • Consideration


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Working Through Resistance few years?

  • Admit your own concern

  • Work through your resistance

  • Validate employee concerns


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Developing a Plan few years?

  • Creating a vision

  • Responding to “What’s in it for me?”

  • Developing an action plan

  • Making the case for change


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Communication few years?

  • Rumors

  • As much detail as possible

  • Newsletters, bulletin boards, website,

  • Progress reports


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Change Agents few years?

  • Pick change agents/leaders

  • Check past change projects

  • Look for enthusiastic people


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Prepare Leaders few years?

  • Provide information

  • Recognize all for support


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Implementing Changes few years?

  • Communicate plans to all

  • Brief everyone on changes

  • Maintain status quo


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Developing Common Goals few years?

  • Set a group-specific goal

  • Find a common ground

  • Build on teamwork


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Evaluate the Changes few years?

  • Monitor the changes

  • Keep records

  • Review the process


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Case Study: few years?Massive Layoffs

  • Mega-Bucks Financial Services (MBFS) is a large brokerage company with several thousand employees.

  • For many years MBFS experienced enormous growth, expanding its business to all 50 states.

  • However, because of a new phenomenon within the industry—day trading—MBFS began to experience a slowdown, virtually overnight.


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Case Study: few years?Massive Layoffs (cont.)

  • Massive layoffs were rumored to occur within the company. When employees confronted their managers, they were told not to worry, but the rumors persisted. Eventually, the company announced that some employees would be given an opportunity for early retirement. A few employees took immediate advantage of this option, however, many others did not. As the business continued to experience shortfalls, many of these employees were given end dates and offered termination packages.


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Case Study: few years?Massive Layoffs (cont.)

  • Several rounds of layoffs occurred, often happening unexpectedly. Managers could not give their workers specific details about what was happening within their unit or within the company in general. Many employees felt even their own managers did not know what was going on.


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Case Study: few years?Massive Layoffs (cont.)

  • During the course of one year, layoffs continued, often sporadically. MBFS was inconsistent in its messages to employees about their future, as well as inconsistent in most of its communications to employees about the company’s future plans.


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Case Study: few years?Massive Layoffs (cont.)

  • Many employees suffered from stress. This stress led to a lack of motivation to do their job.


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Case Study few years?Massive Layoffs (cont.)

  • All employees felt the additional stress of not being informed by MBFS about what was happening. Often there was no communication from management at all. In fact, most of the managers were worried about keeping their own jobs.


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Case Study: few years?Case Study Discussion

  • Preparing employees for layoffs

  • Communicating better

  • Keeping employee morale up


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Summary few years?

  • Change is inevitable

  • Institutions that do not make changes within their programs will not remain competitive.

  • Most people, however, are somewhat uncomfortable with change.

  • Understanding the factors that drive change, and how people within the organization react to it, is an important first step toward success.


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Summary few years?(cont.)

  • Resistance to change follows some definable patterns.

  • Progress is achieved when employees begin to think about certain aspects of the change in a positive light.

  • Before you can get your employees to stop resisting change, you have to accept it yourself.


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Summary few years?(cont.)

  • Get employees involved. Give people the chance to comment on the proposed change and help in the planning.

  • Monitor the changes. Check to see that the changes have been implemented according to the plan.


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Quiz few years?

1. Why is change necessary?

2. What do employees really need to know?

3. How can you accelerate the acceptance of change?

4. What are some of the warning signs that supervisors should watch for during times of change?

5. What should you do if you see these warning signs?

  • Why is it necessary to monitor change?

    7. What methods of communication should you use to let employees know about the changes that are about to occur?

    8. How can you identify change leaders?

    9. Why do employees fight the University’s effort to make changes?

    10. What elements should be in your action plan for change?


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Quiz Answers few years?

1. The University is either moving forward or staying in place. Technology, regulations, efficiency, new programs and services all are reasons for implementing change in the University.

2. As many details as possible. The more open you are about imminent changes provides employees with a sense of confidence about the University and their future.

3. By overcoming your own resistance to change. Your attitude, motivation, and behavior toward the change is vital in setting the tone for others.


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Quiz Answers few years?(cont.)

4. Look for missed deadlines, tardiness, expressed negativism, and low energy levels. Also be aware of employees leaving to work for other companies.

5. Speak privately with the employee, try to find some common goals. Make your change leader aware. Involve the employee with planning and implementing changes.

6. Possibly the change is not working out and needs to be revamped. You will only know this if you keep notes and evaluate the change.


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Quiz Answers few years?(cont.)

7. Lunch time meetings, bulletin boards, newsletters, department websites, campus notices, open forums all are good communication tools.

8. Look at past change situations and who was involved.

9. Fear, uncertainty, and a loss of control. Some employees worry that their jobs will be diminished.

10. Aim and objectives of the change, how, who, the resources, the time scale, monitoring, and a measurement of how you will know if the change is successful.


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Thank you few years?