The following are key takeaways from the “Understanding Change Management to Guide Implementation” chapter:
- Change is tough. Do not expect it to be easy or quick. Accept that it takes time. Change is scary for most people. People will go through various emotions during the change, from anger to resignation to realization of possibility. If you ask people to change, you have to show them how the new/sustainable way will be better for the company.
- Change is not linear. People, departments, and offices will not move in lockstep.
- Deliver. After you tell people you are going to change, you have to do so. Nothing is more demotivating than having an employee with a passion who offers something but nothing is done!
- Before starting on incorporating sustainability, understand your people and how your company deals with change.
- Know where you are on the Hagen-Wilhelm matrix and realize that the skills and competencies required in one phase might be inadequate or you might need new ones in order to move through the next phase.
- When you experience success, push the advantage while you have the momentum.
- There will always be skeptics. Rather than dismissing them, engage them. Find out what their concerns are, and then address them.
- Look at past change initiatives that have been successful, such as introducing sexual harassment policies, work from home, or diversity. Identify what the keys to success were and replicate them.