Change in an ever evolving environment is crucial. Stay still for too long and the competition will have moved too far too fast for you to keep up. One of the primary focuses of my role is driving change. This change impacts a whole technical department and spans process change through to culture change. As time goes by initiating change becomes easier but this wasn’t always the case.
The challenge of initiating change in a new company can depend on many things: company size, position, culture, hierarchy; but one thing I’ve found to be true is that with the right level of persistence anyone can promote change.
When I started my most recent job I was full of ideas and suggestions, observations and assessments of how things are currently done and how they can be done better. Day 1 is not the time to share too much of this. However you might be coming up with good suggestions and making the right observations, make note of these things.
Once you’ve got a feel for your position in the company and know how the clock ticks you can start with some of your smaller ideas. If your boss is a dead end try talking to their boss. If you want buy in from your peers start talking. This is not a fast processes but a careful and methodical one that you will need to nurture if you want to see it through.
Now for the best part. Once you’ve got that first success under your belt the next time will just be easier. The scale of this first change may be small but what you’ve gained was much more than the implementation of an idea, you gained trust. Next time you suggest something your peers will follow quicker, your bosses will agree sooner and with the same persistence and nurturing you will realise your changes.
It is however important to note that your first few changes really do need to be positive experiences. If your idea sucks you only really have yourself to blame.