Companies had to implement a huge number of changes in the past year and some were with very little warning as the impacts of the pandemic were suddenly upon us. While the demands of the pandemic may be unusual, change is nothing new – for the past decade, companies have been forced to make continual changes in their systems and technology and the way they work to remain competitive.

Are we saying change is easy? It depends on how you approach it. Consider that lasting change will help transform your organisation to one that is ready to adapt to an evolving business environment. This requires an effective change management plan and can be an ambitious undertaking. However, it is important to remember the biggest component of any change management plan is the human element or the people side of change.

Too many firms fail to stop and consider why they are making changes and, in the process, ignore the impact of those changes on their people. If you want to implement change that sticks, you need to understand your goals and align your employees with your plan for achieving them.

At MovePlan, we are specialists in change management, and while we are often enlisted to help with  business changes such as helping an organisation transitioning their employees to a new way of working or with a physical relocation, the skills we pass to business leaders can also be used to support everyday change in the future workplace.

This last year has taught us that being able to cope with and adapt to change sets businesses in good stead for long-term success. Companies have struggled in the past to make frequent changes under pressure and incorporating change as a routine part of work. Yet it is those businesses which were already managing change  that fared better when the pandemic hit and we all had to adapt to a ‘new normal’.

We have all witnessed businesses which managed to adapt their during the pandemic to survive. From restaurants offering takeaway services for the first time, to fitness instructors going virtual, those who embraced and adapted to the change have not just survived, but often thrived during the last year. For many others, implementing the changes that came with moving an entire workforce at short notice to remote working was a huge challenge. However, many adapted quickly and effectively.

We are currently working with businesses to support them through various business changes as they continue to navigate in the pandemic environment. The companies that are embracing these changes, viewing them as a positive to strengthen their business and improve employee experience, are handling it best. We have learned so much from the pandemic: it has highlighted many aspects of work which need to change, from the way we work to where we work.

At MovePlan, we are building integrated change management plans to support businesses through these changes, which will no doubt assist businesses to continue to bring about change independently in the future. Focusing on the people side of change is vital, and business leaders who do this instinctively will create lasting change.

As we emerge from the pandemic, business leaders need to wake up to the realisation that change is the only thing that is here to stay.