You may be surprised to read this from me because of my experience and commitment with change. My point is that the word ‘change’ naturally triggers a resistance or a ‘be careful!’ reaction from people. However, this is not the reaction you are after.
You would want them to excitedly help you implement the change. Instead, the triggered reaction is like:
- “Really? Tell me more about why the hell I should leave my comfort zone and help you with some uncertainty called change? What do you know about your change, anyway? What tells me that you are able to manage the disruption that change brings?”
This reaction is triggered naturally by our brain. As Mark Waldman, world renowned Neuroscientist, said “our brain is made for survival”. Any situation that would take us out of our comfort zone triggers a warning to us. Change is one.
I have a Nigerian friend who told me once in a conversation about change, “The devil you know is better than the angel you don’t know.” An African proverb that says it all about change.
So, forget about the word "change" when you are to announce a transformation and if you can, remove it from your job title and/or the job title of people you work with. You will get better engagement.
Here is the reaction you should aim at when announcing news.
- I have some exciting news for you that will transform things in your work or life! I have an amazing opportunity for you!
- “That’s great! I am excited to know about it. Please, please tell me more. I can’t wait to see how that news will transform my life; please tell me.”
Now you have their attention! What transformation do you wish to offer them? If you prepare well, you are about to win some motivated followers.
In my next article, I’ll show you how to present the transformation, your vision or 'change' to your people so that you directly get them engaged.