Secure success with structure

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Q. I'm having trouble getting employees on board with the culture changes I am making. Now what?

A. This statement needs to be in front of you at all times: An event should start a process for continual growth. Your commitment to making a cultural change is the "event." The process involved in making it become continual growth is determined by the training and accountability you provide, as well as the innovation and creativity you allow.

As a leader, you are responsible for: clarifying expectations; providing appropriate training and resources; and enforcing accountability. Those roles can also be translated into coaching, mentoring and counseling.

As a coach, you are laying the ground rules for the values, beliefs and behaviors employees are expected to demonstrate in the workplace.

Mentoring is demonstrating these expectations through your own actions and behaviors. When leaders "walk the talk," it reinforces that the change is real. As a mentor, you will also provide training related to professionalism at work. Whatever training program or method you choose, be sure that you go through it as well. Your attendance not only shows commitment, but also ensures you know the quality of the training and what was covered.

The role of counselor comes into play when there are employees who are experiencing difficulty embracing the change. "Coach up or coach out" is a favorite slogan of mine. You can help someone come up to your level of expectation or coach them out of your organization. Difficult? Maybe, but you want employees whose values, beliefs and behaviors are aligned with yours.

Once you have started cultural changes, secure your success by applying structures that guarantee it. hme

Kelly Franko is an industry trainer and business coach. She can be reached at 330-989-2944 or