With the economy not meeting expectations and donor funding being reduced, a number of organizations in Uganda have restructured this year alone. As Success Africa, we have consulted with several organizations going through this critical transition.
We know that restructuring down right can result into reduced cost and higher returns. A long list of not-so-pleasant things can occur when restructuring is done wrong. High turnover, poor employee morale, tension, increased costs, poor organization image and a negative work environment may result.
Here are some tips for you to get your restructuring right.
Share the story before the action
It’s important to let people know what the entire restructuring process will be like, how it will affect their jobs and what the big picture is. Make sure the team understands the reason for the proposed changes and the good they will bring.
Some leaders never let people know that a restructuring is going to happen. They simply carry it out expecting people to adjust to the shocks soon enough. This doesn’t happen as expected. People become suspicious and great talent usually leaves.
To restructure with a deaf ear is to say you don’t care. When people know that you truly care for them, they will want to support you during this process. And you do need their support.
Invite and listen to people’s concerns and fears. Find meaningful ways to address them and implement.
Space out the different stages of the process in a way that allows people to take it all in.
Change is generally not well received by people. People need time to adjust and take in all the newness around them. Quick changes bring on board too many unfamiliar things too fast. This can be uncomfortable and paralyzing leaving employees on tension.
While you may not necessarily share every detail, share what people need to know to appreciate the restructuring and stay onboard.
Sharing confidential information can be a real scare to some people who may not handle the full detail. Keeping all the information to yourself or the management team alone is not the best option either.
Build your team
When restructuring happens, new policies, strategies or new organization come into play. What the team formerly stood for changes. There is need to pull together everyone to focus them in the same goal. A Team building event would be a great start. You need to also design a strategy to build your team around the new changes.
At Success Africa, we believe that restructuring can be done right. We believe in great workplaces. And we do hope you start at the beginning by sharing and getting everyone to buy into the proposed changes.