Lane Juarez, Senior Consultant – Internal Practice Development
Great Practice Solutions
Change is unavoidable. As a financial advisor, your practice is always changing – tools, processes, forms, regulations, staff, roles and responsibilities, client experience model, practice structure, available products and technology, etc. How you and your team react to change can soften its impact. The following techniques can help your team manage and adapt to a variety of changes.
- Expect and prepare for resistance
As humans, it’s in our nature to resist change. Your team may not understand why a change is occurring and may feel loss of control over it. It’s also common to assume that a change slows down day-to-day processes and requires additional effort. However, by anticipating resistance you can put measures into place to mitigate potential impact and stimulate quicker adoption.
- Paint the big picture
Take appropriate measures to ensure your team is seeing the need for a change through your lens. By helping your team understand the catalyst for change, why it’s important, what it will achieve, and how it will be implemented, you will better prepare them to manage their feelings about how it will impact them.
- Identify a team member to become an expert
Rather than expecting everyone on your team to fully understand all aspects of a change, identify a single team member to research and communicate pertinent information to the team. Your team expert should be able to identify how the change will truly impact day-to-day processes, provide context around the personal benefits and help teammates more quickly adapt.
- Ensure the team has access to available resources
Whether it’s your team expert, the contact center, a training course, a company memo, or embedded technology help sections, ensure that your team knows where to go for help when they are struggling during a transition period. Frustration can escalate when an individual feels at a loss for information or support; but providing available resources can alleviate those feelings before they grow.
- Identify your laggards and your adopters
Just one team member’s resistance can slow down others from moving forward with their own change curve. Work with that person to understand their issues and how you can help them move forward. Leverage those who are adopting the change as a resource to help provide insight and guidance.
- Build change acceptance into your practice culture
Change is a constant in life, but by building good acceptance habits into your practice culture you will likely see your team adopt future changes at a much faster rate.
When change occurs, you might find yourself in need of one or all of these strategies. The key is to be proactive. Implementing a well-thought-out process to introduce changes to your team can save time as you work to enhance your practice.
Enhance your practice by embracing change.
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