How to Help Your Teams Better Adapt to Disruptive but Necessary Change in 2020

By: Kristy Esch

[vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column][vc_column_text]With innovation, comes change, often disruptive, fast and frequent. The speed and prevalence of these developments impact markets, businesses, how people shop, and more importantly, your team. So what can you do to help your teams handle the necessary disruption, typically in the form of technology, to move forward and grow the company’s revenue in 2020?


Businesses understand that change is necessary and important to meet your customers’ needs, especially in today’s information society, yet not everyone embraces this process. As the leader of your organization, the way you implement change impacts the success of that change. You need real tactics in place to help your team better adapt.


Technology can help your team work smarter instead of harder in the sales process by giving them the tools to increase conversions and improve lead follow-up. From chat-to-text tools, interactive quizzes and virtual tours to automated emails and a marketing cloud with a connected CRM, these powerful tools fuel productive teams. With the right training and technology, they will increase the satisfaction of your customers and your staff. Which in turn, will lift your bottom line.


“The multifamily industry continues to be faced with interruptions and challenges, making it difficult for their teams to stay focused on daily operations,” says Keir Schutte, Owner of KP Consulting Services, a property management consultant for apartment communities. “We must continue to educate ourselves, and our teams. Also, it is important to have the tools that help us/them stay focused and organized.”


Start with the ‘Why?’ When Implementing New Technology


Why undergo the change? What exactly will change, and how will it impact your team or the customer — or both?


Explaining the bigger picture engages your staff to focus on the benefits of the technology and how it supports the vision of the company. Be sure to involve your team in important planning discussions before rolling out new technology, and maintain open communication as you work through the decision-making process around this particular change. Allocate time to answer questions and get input.


Even if you are the ultimate decision-maker, soliciting input from your team will help them feel a sense of ownership while also getting familiarized with the tools they’re gaining.


How Innovation Benefits Your Team


Will the technology make your team’s job easier or streamline a currently laborious process? Will the change increase sales or shorten the sales cycle?


Find the benefits and share those with your team. You may understand how this disruption will result in a better experience for all, yet don’t assume everyone knows what you know. Clearly state the desired result of implementing the latest solution.


“We share with our team how the change is going to benefit them,” says Joey Weathers, Internet Specialist at Furniture Mall of Kansas, which recently rolled out the “Ask a Question” chat-to-text feature on their website. “We share how it is going to help them connect with our guests, improve their follow-ups and sales.”[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][vc_single_image image=”29445″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” qode_css_animation=””][vc_empty_space][vc_column_text]

Teach Your Teams How to Use New Tools


Arm your staff with instructions and educate them on the updated processes. Hopefully, your parents didn’t put you on a bike without any instructions and tell you to go. Provide the appropriate time and space for training. It may feel like time you can’t afford, yet it will save you time and money in the long run, especially if your team ends up under-utilizing your latest investment because they don’t know how to use it.


“We have training sessions with the staff, usually once a month,” Weathers says. “They are able to ask any questions they have and we make sure they understand it all.”


Tim Whitaker, Sales Manager at Furniture Mall of Kansas adds, “Our No. 1 priority is for our guests to have the same type of valuable experience online as they get when they’re in our store, and that has a lot to do with educating the full team.”


Orient the sales managers and their teams with the digital information captured from the customer. “Help your team communicate with the customer via their preferred method — call, email, or text message,” says David Kain, President of Kain Automotive, a digital marketing and consulting firm for the automotive industry. “The website is the new floor. The salesperson who reaches out to the customer will be the one creating engagement and a good customer experience.”<


Ask Team Members for Feedback


By simply asking for feedback, you invite your team to provide new insights you may miss because you’re not on the front lines every day. In return, they feel like they are contributing to the success of the organization.


According to an article in Forbes, if leaders encourage and recognize staff suggestions, 62% of employees would recommend the organization as a great place to work. Take that feedback to your technology partner. A true partner will want that feedback to continuously improve their products.


When your team provides their thoughts on the new changes, it may uncover additional pain points you can address, ultimately leading to a more satisfied employee.


Celebrate Successes Innovation Brings


Share the successes your team achieves as a result of adopting new technology. Storytelling is a great way to solidify buy-in. Powerful success stories can create a safe space to try something new, encourage growth and convey a feeling that change is part of your culture and will be rewarded. A study conducted by IBM indicates employees who aren’t being developed are 12X more likely to leave.


When you start with the end in mind, better technology for a better customer experience and happier employees, think through the process and set your team up for the best success.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]