Change is never easy, but it’s essential to a growing enterprise. Having effective and efficient processes is one of the top factors of success in business growth. Whenever you create a new business process or change an existing one, it’s important to consider how to get your entire team on board. Without organizational buy in, even the best processes can fail. And if the new process is one you plan to outsource such as HR or payroll, there may be extra steps to take in order to involve potential partners outside the company.
Here are some of the best ways to get buy-in for a new business process:
Make sure YOU are bought in
The best way to sell a new idea or business process is to believe in it yourself. Before you bring solutions to the table, invest some time and energy into forming your own professional opinion about them. While it may seem obvious to do this, it’s not uncommon for people to share ideas that are somewhat under-developed. The risk is that others will become weary from the process of considering too many different ideas that ultimately aren’t practical for the company.
Do your own due diligence and seek out complete solutions with company goals in mind. Keep in mind that a process can have many steps, can involve many people, and the process experience and outputs can affect a broad audience, perhaps even your customers. Considering the impact on your customer is huge! So think about processes from beginning to end and involve people from every perspective in your self-discovery process.
Remember that your goal is to factor in all the variables necessary to first convince yourself that the new business process will aid in achieving business growth. And once you’re satisfied that you have a great idea, you’ll be anxious to share it, and others will notice the thought you’ve put into it. This creates an accelerated path to company buy-in.
Communicate and engage people
Involving others as you share ideas for new business processes is not always a one and done scenario. It’s a process. Think about the time you’ve already invested in coming to the point of conviction about a new process, and realize that others need to experience that process too.
People tend to do this in different ways, and company culture can come into play also. Some people lean on trusted advisors to present solutions. Others prefer to do their own due diligence, and some rely on very detailed information and data to make an informed decision. Sometimes company culture can set the tone for collaboration and communication, so find ways to approach this process in ways that are culturally acceptable.
Make sure you involve a wide range of people in the buy-in process, not just the key decision makers. Talk to people and departments who will be affected by the change and invite them to share concerns. Listen and find ways to address those concerns. And once you’ve vetted the idea to a person or group of folks, allow ample time for processing and invite an open exchange of ideas.
If input doesn’t flow freely, then ask probing questions such as:
- Can you think of any challenges this new process might present?
- What are your initial thoughts about this process idea?
- What impact do you think this new business process could have on business growth?
Invite dialogue and engagement, and keep in mind that it will take time for others to become as convicted about the idea as you are.
Keep an open mind
Even the best ideas for process changes can fail to get organization buy-in, or in some cases new and better spins on the idea are brought to bear. This is good! Remember, your job isn’t to sell any particular idea, but to facilitate the process of making the best decision for the company’s future. Change can often be slow, more like evolution, so don’t force anything prematurely. Even if you don’t achieve buy-in for a new process, you’ve planted the seeds for future growth.
FrankCrum is here to assist businesses in their growth through outsourced HR. We offer complete solutions that combine people resources, technology platforms, proven processes for HR that are constantly refined, and insurance products for workers’ compensation and employee benefits. We can achieve process improvements for clients at a price point that is usually much less than they can do themselves.