Need to make changes in your small business? How to bring your team on board

tap into the power of collaboration in your small business

See if this sounds familiar:

You recognize that there’s an area that needs improvement in your small business. Maybe you need to replace some software you’re using, or change a system. Making the change is critical so you invest a lot of your time into researching to problem and available solutions so you can find what is absolutely the best way to move forward.

You’re being diligent. You’re doing your homework. You’re putting in the hours and exercising your brainpower for the betterment of your small business and everyone who works for you. You have finally focused in on what is certainly the best way to go in this situation and you call everyone together so you can start to implement the change.

Because you’re making an improvement you expect everyone to receive your new ideas with open arms, but that doesn’t happen. A few members of your team will be bold enough to point out what’s “wrong” with your solution, while some others will quietly grumble about the changes.

You have a different problem now: Getting everyone on board with the changes that need to happen.

In my example, the small business owner had great intentions – making things better for everyone. And the owner may have proceeded solo prompted by the desire not to bother anyone else with the problem. However, that route delayed acceptance.

Compare that approach to a strategy that gets members of your team involved in researching the problem and possible solutions, and working to come up with an answer that is ideal for your small business.

Here’s the trade off: If you take a top-down approach to developing and implementing changes, you may spend weeks in research and then years to get your changes fully accepted (if they are ever fully accepted). If you take a collaborative approach in these situations, it may take you longer to do the research, but you will probably get the changes implemented far more quickly and painlessly. And not only will your team buy into the solution better, their loyalty to your small business will increase through the process.

It’s true that doing things “by committee” can slow down the initial part of the process, but the payoff you get after those first steps can far outweigh the initial slowness – and that’s really what matters in the long run.

(Get more examples of how collaboration will benefit your small business.)