We have experienced a lot of rapid growth over the past couple of years which is great but with that rapid growth comes a lot of changes. As an executive there are so many parts to manage during as growth phase but one factor I really try to keep a focus on is managing the people part of changes within our organization. While change is a natural part of a company’s growth, change doesn’t come easily to many people, over the years I have become acutely aware of the fear that change evokes, the fear of the unknown and the uncertainty that goes along with the chaos change can bring. Left unchecked and unmanaged this fear of change can cripple an organization and mis-align the plans that we have for our growth trajectory.
For me, overcoming these challenges simply comes down to communication, which, as with most things, is a lot more complicated than it seems at face value. For J4 some of our growth has happened so rapidly that we have not had the time to fully plan for or envision all the changes that we would be facing. But I’ve learned, somewhat through trial and error, that the foundation for this fear of change is generally a result of employees not being well informed, this creates an environment full of assumptions and rumors start to fly.
As a leader of this Company I strive to create a vision and clear direction for the change initiatives as they come along. Over the last few years we have established strong core Executive and Management Teams and once we have set a direction I am able to utilize their skills and experience to communicate and work with employees on the changes that affect day to day operations. Their direct, open door communication with employees helps keep employees engaged and moving forward. As we regularly circle back and the Management Team is able to share feedback from their departments we occasionally find that we have to adjust our plan or direction based on employee feedback.
While this sudden growth is exciting, partnering with our employees and watching them flourish through some challenging times makes the growth all that much more rewarding.