Economic crisis - the right time for change?

17th of December 2015
Economic crisis - the right time for change?

Is a period of economic decline the right time to make strategic business changes, asks Oleg Popov of Cristanval Cleaning - ECJ Russia correspondent.

Strategic management pioneer Igor Ansoff stated that strategic changes are a declaration of war both to your own team and everyone else. What would be the cause for such a rash and dogmatic statement? One must always remember that all departments of a company, personnel, management, partners, clients – everyone has their own goals and expectations that don’t necessarily coincide with those of other members of the company. Before you decide to undertake strategic changes, are you certain that your employees, partners, and clients will be able to overcome them?

Any system is optimised, so there is always something that can be improved without resorting to radical changes. During an economic decline, we strive to save not only our money, but also other resources. First on that list is human resources. When beginning a revolution, it is easy to lose motivation and disorganise your team.

Global changes are needed in a company only when it is incapable of achieving its set goals based on the current regime. First, be sure you are able to prove that you are truly in need of transformations before you decide to test your luck in a dangerous game.

Any system will experience resistance to changes. Scientists have researched the 100 best companies in the world and determined a consistent sequence of reactions observed to altered conditions. Any work force goes through these four stages:

1. Everyone supports the changes.

2. People begin to have doubts.

3. Everyone is against the changes.

4. The situation is stabilised back to normal.

If even in the best corporations the employees are resistant to change, what does that say about the average business? In the best case scenario, everyone will merely resort back to the former conditions and in the worst case, irreversible processes will take place resulting in the company’s collapse. This is especially dangerous during an economic decline. And even if we’ve entered into a time of turbulence and figures are on decline, it doesn’t mean that the former model of operation must be changed.

Owners of large and average-size cleaning companies communicate with one another. Everyone understands that making it through a period of uncertainty is possible only when putting all of the team’s heads together. Caution is the main trend currently determining the behaviour of companies on the Russian market. No one is making rash changes or changing their team.

My advice, before you make the decision to undertake transformations within your company, is to prove that you actually in fact need them. Sometimes the way to overcome an economic decline is by simply improving upon what you’ve achieved over your many years of progress.


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