Stepping Your Business Up to the Next Level, but Finding it Hard to Energize the Team? Follow These Three Steps to Energize Your Change Management

Like most business owners/managers, you will likely be aware of the many untapped opportunities and ‘goldmines’ in your business. Tapping, nurturing, and growing the value and profits from these ‘goldmines’ requires effective change. This could include changes like retraining your sales force to acquire larger/different revenue opportunities, training your team to work smarter at peak efficiency to improve work life balance and your bottom line, and many more such opportunities. This requires carefully managing the change(s) required to achieve these desired benefits.

For the success of the change, focus should be on people!

In situations of change, people tend to rely on their leader for guidance due to uncertainty. A leader in the change management process should be a motivator driving people, and sometimes lending a helping hand. He/she will need to have a deep understanding of people. One of the problems many organizations face during change management is managing the vast difference in learning capacity and responses from person to person.

During the previous decade, SandS Australia has helped many organizations to successfully implement change management to rapidly improve businesses. These projects varied from small scale to diversified, large scale developments. Assisting an organization to resurrect, survive and thrive from a difficult situation in the business environment, implementing a new system, guiding organizations to reach high volume sales, training and development programs to improve technical skills on subject matter areas are few of the examples SandS has successfully delivered.

Model for Successful Change Management

1. Vision (You) – Communicate, Communicate and Communicate!!

Content and mode communication play a crucial role in driving change in an organization. It is important to understand organization culture and then develop the communication strategy. For an example, employees in an organization working as small knit groups will like to hear this information in casual discussions rather than through formal mails. Use multiple channels as much as possible. Emphasis WHY you need to do the changes and HOW it impacts employees and organization.

2. Change Agents (Your Team) – Use People Power!!

Implementing something new should be fully supported by the employees. Their voice should be heard and their concerns should be addressed. Identify the Subject Matter Experts and make them leaders to drive the change. It is important that you give every employee to contribute towards the end result. Do not forget to recognize and reward their contribution upon successful completion of this task. It is important to develop trust with people in this process.

3. Structure (SandS Business Resultants) – Setup and Coach, to Learn, Practice, Measure, and Improve!

Throughout the implementation phase, it is important to embed formal mechanisms to capture and manage feedback. Encourage all the team members that learning is a key factor throughout the project. Arrange your Change Management Project in an agile manner to incorporate new improvements that are often not visible at the beginning of the project. It is also vital to measure the success of the project. Communicate results of the project with every team member and employee.

Written by Nara, ACMA, CGMA (CIMA-UK), MBA (ICFAI University). Nara is a Commercial Accountant at SandS Australia. She has 15 years of experience in business, finance and accounting in senior managerial roles helping analyse, identify, and drive business growth

Edited by Sam Mansoor. Chartered Management Accountant, CPA, Chartered Global Management Accountant, Dip. Equity Trading. He has over 30 years’ experience helping businesses achieve immediate and long-term success.

Tips to improve teamwork at your organisation

Having a collaborative team has a direct impact on how well an organization functions. Good teamwork helps improve creativity as employees are able to exchange ideas in order to arrive at the best solution. Also the individual members in a team may each have their own strengths and weaknesses, so each individual is able to bring his/ her talents to the table.

There are many associated challenges when it comes to managing a team such as conflicts, internal politics and lack of trust; all of which contribute in bringing the team down. Teams that don’t work together will struggle to perform.

This article provides some tips on how you can build an effective team at your workplace.

1. Be clear on the team’s purpose

A purpose that everyone understands will give clarity, meaning and direction and can lead the way for better decision making. When people are clear and aligned about what they need to achieve as a team, they can become a high performance team.

2. Maintain open communication

Pick the right channel to communicate with your team and always ensure the information is communicated to all team members without fail. This helps to build a cohesive team where everyone share their ideas and work together to arrive at the solution. Frequent communication can help team members develop a sense of belonging and strengthen relationships.

3. Clarify role and responsibilities

Ambiguity with regard to roles could create overlapping tasks between team members. This would ultimately lead to an inefficient team as there would be duplicated tasks. To prevent this it is important that roles and responsibilities are clearly documented so each member understands how their work fits in the wider context.

4. Encourage Informal Social Events

Informal social events like team lunch/ dinner, trivia contests, movie nights would be good way to really strengthen relationships among your team. Keep it simple and informal so that the employees are more likely to attend it and do not force people to participate in team building activities as it can in fact have the opposite effect. In the current context of the pandemic team building activities can be still carried out virtually using applications like Microsoft Teams and Zoom.

Written by Zara, ACMA,CGMA, BBA(Accountancy & Finance). Zara is a Finance and Commercial Executive at SandS Australia. She has 4+ years’ experience in Auditing, Finance and Accounting which helps her drive business growth.

Edited by Sam Mansoor. Chartered Management Accountant, CPA, Chartered Global Management Accountant, Dip. Equity Trading. He has over 30 years’ experience helping businesses achieve immediate and long-term success.

Impact of Training & Development to an Organization

Training and development is an indispensable activity in corporate world. However, training and development is one of the lowest things on the priority list of most companies; though this is at the persistence of the HR department organizing proper training and development sessions for employees.

Training allows employees to acquire new skills, sharpen existing ones, perform better, increase productivity and be better leaders. In certain instances, the impact of training and development will not yield overnight. It will be an investment over the time to maintain consistency in employee contribution and work quality.

We at SandS have noticed that most business owners are reluctant to spend on training and development activities and they consider it as an expense not as an investment.

This article summarises the benefits and different ways of conducting training and development;

1. Addressing short-comings

Make the purpose of the training to iron-out weaknesses of employees based on departments or designation. For an example trainee telecommunication associates will significantly lack telephone etiquette; because, they join as trainees. Their training should be detailed oriented compared to executive levels.

2. Positive Employee retention

Adding training and development to an employment contract will gain employee loyalty. Professional development will enable employees to perform their tasks accurately and this will enable them to get promoted for the work done as well.

3. Empowering Employees

Train leadership skills to employees. In return, they can inspire, motivate and mobilize their team members with a compelling vision. This will increase the organisation’s performance and results.

4. Increased employee engagement

Once training and development sessions are conducted; there should be a mechanism to track the effectiveness of employees at work place. This should also be combined with the appraisal system. This will increase positive employee engagement at work.

Written by Nara, ACMA, CGMA (CIMA-UK), MBA (ICFAI University). Nara is a Commercial Accountant at SandS Australia. She has 15 years of experience in business, finance and accounting in senior managerial roles helping analyse, identify, and drive business growth

Edited by Sam Mansoor. Chartered Management Accountant, CPA, Chartered Global Management Accountant, Dip. Equity Trading. He has over 30 years’ experience helping businesses achieve immediate and long-term success.

Emotional Intelligence in Business. Does this really matter? …

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is the ability to perceive, manage, and regulate emotions. There is no other best time than the pandemic that stressed the importance of Emotional Intelligence. This has become an increasingly importance topic in the business environment nowadays; though this was limited to HR related training discussions sometime back. Specially EQ is an important element and a soft skill to possess by strategic leaders and business owners.

As a result of maintaining social distance urged by the pandemic, majority started operating in a remote work environment. This has worked effectively for most of the businesses. However, one drawback of remote work is that it’s more difficult to communicate emotions via digital media than when you’re face-to-face.

This will be a challenge for the leaders who haven’t had to supervise teams or individuals virtually before. Its important to know how you can effectively cultivate EQ in your organisation. Shown below are some of the practices one can follow as a business leader;

1. Leaders to be aware and lead

2. Know each others’ strengths and weaknesses

3. Creativity to manage stress

4. Work and play together

1. Leaders to be aware and lead

Initially leaders should have a fair understanding about their own emotions and their team members’. This is a challenging task but this will make practising EQ in the office more meaningful. Effective communication is an essential element in achieving this. Leaders should have the ability to listen to others and willingness to help. This creates a good team bonding and team members and peers will like to work with/for a leader with a good emotional intelligence.

2. Know each others’ strengths and weaknesses

It is not easy to have an understanding about someone else’s emotions. The best strategy is to identify their strengths and weaknesses. Because emotions are driven by strengths and weaknesses. When you know your teams strengths and weaknesses, you know how to handle tough business situations and to manage communication within the team. This will minimise conflicts and earn 100% contribution from the team.

3. Creativity to manage stress

It is best to minimise and eliminate methods of increasing stress in your organiization/team. You should find creative ways to eliminate stress without impacting your business’s goals and results. Listed below are different methods to avoid /minimise stress within teams;

– Have a schedule and a system in built. Stick to the schedule.

– Allow team members to disconnect from work when necessary and take breaks

4. Work and Play together

If your work plan allows individual work most of the time; create opportunities for the employees to work in team projects. This will allow collaboration and opportunities to share knowledge. At the sametime, allow team gatherings and outings on periodic basis. Ensure to celebrate team achievements and individual achievements!

We at SandS when undertaking projects to build high performing teams, we include Emotional Intelligence as an important element. Steps mentioned above have helped our clients immensely to build productive teams.

Written by Nara, ACMA, CGMA (CIMA-UK), MBA (ICFAI University). Nara is a Commercial Accountant at SandS Australia. She has 15 years of experience in business, finance and accounting in senior managerial roles helping analyse, identify, and drive business growth

Edited by Sam Mansoor. Chartered Management Accountant, CPA, Chartered Global Management Accountant, Dip. Equity Trading. He has over 30 years’ experience helping businesses achieve immediate and long-term success.