Successful organizations must involve top executives, lower organizational layers, IT, and business stakeholders in change management to execute change successfully. Multidisciplinary teams with technical experts and experts from all the functions that the initiative will touch should share accountability for results and focus on delivering business outcomes. CIOs should care about the emotions of change and create a mental track record of as many positives as possible. Companies can include “listening to the drawbacks” sessions in the change plan to address employees’ concerns. Gartner for Information Technology Executives provides actionable, objective insight to CIOs and IT leaders to help them drive their organizations through digital transformation and lead business growth.
Gartner, Inc., the leading research and advisory company, recommends that CIOs take four steps to reduce employee fatigue in their organizations. Due to the unprecedented amount of change since the COVID-19 pandemic, employees are fatigued of change, which is impacting the success of technological initiatives. Therefore, CIOs should take the following steps:
1. Treat Change Fatigue as a Business Issue
According to Gartner’s research, eight out of ten CIOs do not make fatigue a regular part of their conversations about business technology initiatives. CIOs should factor change fatigue into their planning initiatives by adding a fatigue evaluation. This should be arranged as a discussion with business partners, including at a minimum the level of effort each initiative requires and how to combine the day-to-day with the initiative.
2. Distribute Change Leadership
Gartner advised CIOs to establish a distributed leadership, like assigning overseers and tactical decision-makers dispersed across the organization. This will have a closer contact with workers and can change directions when fatigue rises. Distributed leadership also spreads the burden of decision making, another key cause of stress.
3. Co-Create Execution and Involve Stakeholders
The third step is to co-create execution and involve stakeholders. According to Gartner, CIOs should involve stakeholders from the beginning of the change process. They should also identify stakeholders’ pain points and concerns and make sure that their voices are heard throughout the initiative. This approach will help employees to feel that they are part of the process, leading to greater buy-in and fewer feelings of helplessness and fatigue.
4. Manage Employee Fatigue at the Individual Level
Finally, CIOs should manage employee fatigue at the individual level. Gartner recommends that CIOs and their teams talk to employees to understand their concerns and identify ways to mitigate them. CIOs should also provide employees with the necessary resources and support to manage their workload effectively.
In conclusion, employee fatigue is a critical factor that CIOs need to consider when implementing technological initiatives. By following Gartner’s four steps, CIOs can help mitigate employee fatigue and increase the success of their initiatives.
To execute change successfully, the most prosperous organizations include top executives and lower organizational layers in decision-making and involve IT and business stakeholders in change management. According to Gartner analyst Daniel Sanchez-Reina, CIOs should create teams that include technical experts and experts from all the functions that the initiative will touch to ensure the multidisciplinary teams share accountability for results and focus on delivering business outcomes, not merely completing a project plan.
Moreover, it is essential for CIOs to care about the emotions of change, creating a mental track record of as many positives as possible. Sanchez-Reina suggests that some companies include “listening to the drawbacks” sessions in the change plan, where employees can openly share their concerns. This initiative replaces the occasional venting moments in the water cooler or vending machine, making those concerns manageable.
Gartner clients can find out more in “Four Tactics to Mitigate Change Fatigue.” Gartner for Information Technology Executives provides actionable, objective insight to CIOs and IT leaders to help them drive their organizations through digital transformation and lead business growth. Additional information is available at www.gartner.com/en/information-technology. Follow news and updates from Gartner for IT Executives on Twitter and LinkedIn.
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