Do shifting tides cause shifts in your team? There seems to be a pretty obvious answer to the question. Of course they do.
We all know intuitively and factually that about the only thing we can count on in business is change.
- The economy
- The market
All these things change and shift around, and we constantly monitor these changes and make adjustments to take advantage of the changes or to protect ourselves our enterprise from the changes. The companies that deal with change the best tend to be the leaders.
Yet, although this is pretty obvious, I often see leaders underestimating how the changes affect team members. The people on the team are the ones who have to implement, react to, overcome, and often just live with the changes. All of this impacting them in a variety of ways. Leaders feel the impact quite personally, but they often miss, or forget about, the same impacts on the team.
The biggest impact can often be on motivation. One huge motivating factor in life is how one feels about the impact they are having on the progress of the organization. Another big motivating factor is how much control one feels that they have over their work. Finally, another important motivating factor is that of having the feeling that one is part of something bigger than one’s self.
Change, if not acknowledged and communicated effectively, eats away at these motivating factors.
When there is constant change, or a big change (especially downturns or failures), it’s time to up the ante on communication about the the changes. The communication needs to be especially focused on including the team on how they can adapt to, or help with, the change. They need to be involved in setting new directions in responding to change.
That way, they can feel that they are making an impact, that they have control, and that they are part of something headed in the right direction.
Don’t underestimate the shift in your team caused by the shifting tides in your business.