Fear of the unknown is still one of the oldest and strongest emotions that mankind harbours each day. But change should be something most of us look forward to, especially in the workplace.
Many conversations are sparked in the office with colleagues on how things could and should be different but when change does occur, terror and discomfort fill the office atmosphere. The truth is, change is inevitable and crucial for the growth of any business. It is important to not resist change that will make the business thrive, and overcoming the fear of the unknown helps embrace any change ahead.
There are a variety of reasons that employees fear change at work; things like fear of failure, fear of success, fear of rejection, fear of criticism and the unknown. A new boss usually unsettles an entire office dynamic; many people get nervous because of uncertainty. The main cause of the anxiety amongst employees with new management is whether or not the new boss will like them, or if they will like the boss. That said, it is actually normal to feel a bit fearful or confused about workplace changes, so here are a few ways to help you overcome your fears.
6 tips on handling change in the workplace
- Recognise the change
Acknowledging the change is the first step to dealing with it. Denying that change is occurring only makes things more difficult.
- Face your feelings
Acknowledge your fears by taking some time out for yourself and writing them down, go through each fear and devise a plan on what you would do if that fear came to pass.
- Confront your feelings and seek support
Accept your feelings of fear and the transition you are going through. Talk to colleagues and friends to share your experience and emotions regarding the transition.
- Block the fearful thoughts
Fear comes from creating negative thoughts in your head about what lies ahead. Positive thinking will help you cope with change, welcome change as an opportunity.
- Communicate and embrace the change
Effective communication of fears with your seniors and co-workers can help address those concerns and be calmed.
- Be part of the change
Be flexible and take on new tasks that come with change, adopt an attitude of anticipation and excitement.
Being able to adapt to change is vital not only to your career but to organisational growth. With the right attitude and outlook, new and exciting opportunities can be found in the change.