3 steps for HR Leaders to manage culture change

To successfully manage culture change within organisations, HR leaders must be agile, proactive and foresee the paradigms of the future to help get the business and key stakeholders on board, according to Cindy Reid, head of HR for Konica Minolta.

In order to develop a plan for the future and help manage upcoming organisational challenges, she said HR must work collaboratively to understand the bigger picture of workforce planning and potential talent ramifications.

“Work closely with your peers, the leadership team and especially those who are critical to the running of your organisation at all levels,” said Reid.

“HR has to work with the business to develop that change, whatever those changes may be. Don’t forget that HR is one of the business leaders who is contributing, developing and designing what that change looks like in the future.”

“Don’t fear the unknown”

If a business is planning to evaluate or change its business model, she said it is important to keep talent in mind and think carefully about what sort of people, skills and experiences are needed to fulfil customer’s needs.

“It’s about assessment; what skills do we have and what skills do we foresee a need for. Then, fill in the spaces in terms of talent strategy and what you will need for the future,” she said.

“Don’t fear the unknown.”

Employees are used to working within their comfort zone, and she said a cultural change may require them to work in an organisation that they are less familiar with tomorrow than they are today.

“How are they going to feel about that? HR leaders should not be afraid to challenge established beliefs and processes,” said Reid, who made three suggestions for HR leaders in helping to manage culture change:

  1. Have a mindset of agility. Know your business and recognise that the market will continue to change. You need to be very agile in your thinking about how future talent will work in your business; not only today, but in the future.
  2. Know the business and industry you’re in as well as the technical and behavioural competencies that are required.
  3. Understand the talent market, availability of talent and market competitiveness. Are you able to align what’s happening in the talent market with organisational strategies?

By Alex Robertson