When it comes time to make a decision, implement a new strategy, or initiate a change, it’s critical that you get buy-in from your team before moving forward. Individuals who feel as though change is “trickled down” and they are not given a choice, often put up a lot of resistance. If you’d like change to happen more easily, then seek first to get buy-in prior to getting started.
First, gather your team together and let everyone know the objective, agenda and goal. The more informed people are, the more they understand the problem or see the need for a new solution, the more likely the are to be on board and participate allowing for a smooth transition. Ensure that each team member understands what’s at stake and what the possibilities are for going in a new direction.
When you paint the picture of the problem(s) at hand, you’ll immediately get people to recognize that something can and should be done differently. If they don’t know there is a problem or that things could be better, you’ll need to explore the possibilities with them of what it could look like. Get people excited and share the direct benefits that they’ll feel and receive. (Think less customer complaints, smoother transitions between departments, and so on.)
Next, allow all team members the chance to have their voice heard. When individuals feel that their voices, opinions and thoughts don’t matter, they are more likely to ‘buck’ the system. However, when people feel that they are really heard with their ideas, they will participate at a higher level and give crucial feedback. Many times, the people who are working ‘in the trenches’ will have innovative ideas that could possibly be more efficient and effective over the long-run.
Then, ask for feedback and help in designing a co-creative implementation process. Instead of telling them how it will be done, ask your team how it can best be done. When people come up with their own ideas and get to share their opinions on how a transition can take place, they are more likely to ensure that it does work since they helped create the process.
Finally, be sure to celebrate the success of the transition. Even if something new fails, honor and recognize all that tried, contributed, and put value into the idea. When something does succeed, give credit where it is due. The more people get recognized and valued for their contributions, the more likely they are to contribute again in the future.
If you follow these steps, you’ll be sure to get faster buy-in with team members who are on board for change!
What else do you do to get buy-in from your team?