Many businesses, departments, and even small teams struggle with navigating change while keeping accurate data records. Change in business is as inevitable as paying taxes. Data Visualization and tracking aids quick decision making and change management.
Assess Your Current Data
As soon as you become aware of any upcoming organizational or environmental change, ask these questions to get a better grasp of your current situation:
- Is our current data accurate?
- Are our data sources reliable?
- How often do staff have to search for the same information?
- Is our data scattered across various platforms, networks or filing systems?
These questions help you assess your current data management. If data is unreliable, inaccessible, or inaccurate, decisions made during a change will not be based on reality.
If your data management needs improvement, start by narrowing down on the essential data you need prior to a change, and how it is doing to be effectively stored. For example, before you make any changes to your sales team, you might want to track the outbound call volume to sales ratio. Be sure that the data you collect is relevant. Too much data can be just as devastating as too little.
Create an Action Plan to Retain Information Quality
Next, create your action plan. Organizational, personnel, and environmental changes can wreak havoc on the accuracy of your data. After the change, you do not want to discover that important data was lost during the transition period.
To avoid this, create an action plan that aims to retain your information quality. This action plan is an opportunity to be clear, and very specific about how you want data captured, stored, and reviewed across your whole team. Bring your optimal data vision to life and ensure that everybody uses the same system going forward.
Identify What Success Looks Like
Data offers unique insights into how well your company can handle change, available resources, and the likelihood of failure during a change. Use the data you have, to find areas that might present difficulties for your team. Maybe you will discover sales always struggle in February. Perhaps you will identify a few team members who have very low productivity towards the end of the month.
You can utilize this information to your team’s benefit and avoid change affecting sales figures. For example, if sales always slump in February due to external seasonal factors, you may choose to schedule significant system changes or personnel changes for February since it will not affect your busy month’s sales.
Identify how you will get through the change successfully, transitioning with minimal losses while increasing or maintaining revenue and productivity. Control what you can and choose how you are going to achieve success.
Begin Making Changes
Some change can happen overnight, some takes weeks, months or even years. When you have properly planned how to protect your data through any transition period, and how you are going to achieve success, then you can begin making changes to daily activities that will produce the desired result. Before making changes, it is important that team members accept the change and how it will affect them.
Monitor daily tasks and modify each team member’s duties or habits as necessary. You are not immune from the change; this could mean altering your own habits or responsibilities too. Start by changing the small things.
Use Data to Celebrate Short-Term Wins
Many employees may be resistant to change, even if they can see the benefits. As you monitor your data, encourage your team by identifying how well they are adapting to the change. Acknowledging the people or processes that are positively changing can act as a great morale booster. The data and success statistics will act as a ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ for many staff members.
Finalize, Celebrate and Continue Improvement
Knowing that you are on the path to success and giving credit to short-term wins will help finalize any changes that may have gone through some resistance. Push your final changes through and celebrate the significant success of your team and your company. Continue to improve on your methods of implementing data to better prepare for future change.