Recruitment companies are always implementing new processes and investing in new recruitment tech and whilst this will inevitably improve the quality of your workflows and development, it’s important not to go overboard with the amount of change you enact.
By implementing changes too quickly, you’re most likely going to drain energy from your employees – this is what’s called ‘change fatigue’.
So what do you do?
Well, it’s important to drive internal changes with an understanding of the team’s capacity to manage change. This intel will undoubtedly ensure that employees can adapt to the transition productivity, without becoming fatigued.
What is change fatigue?
Change fatigue stems from changes that disrupt or prevent one’s ability to do their job and happens when transformations or adjustments become stressful for them – resulting in a mental state called ‘liminality.’
Liminality is a frame of mind where a person is stuck between the familiar and the unknown; a transition state between an old form and a new one. People in this state often feel disoriented and need a return to normality.
People with change fatigue are overwhelmed by the immediate demands and consequently become stuck in a mental state of indecisiveness and anxiety because they feel overwhelmed by uncertainty in their current situation.
Is Change Fatigue Common?
Rapid changes in your company are bound to happen, but for your employees, it can feel like a new and unwelcome change every day… and the fear of the unknown is especially prevalent when you’re new to the organisation.
In a recent study conducted by Microsoft, it was reported that 54% of managers say leadership is out of touch with employers and 74% of managers say they don’t have the influence or resources to make changes for employees. (Microsoft Tech Trends Insight 2022 Report)
So how do you ensure your happy employees remain happy throughout any transformation?
Combatting Change Fatigue
Leadership needs to consider the mental capacity of their workforce when implementing new initiatives and organisational changes. Consider letting people know about the change before it happens, so they can mentally prepare to adapt and adopt.
Communicating with them before, during, and after a new change will ensure they know how to adapt and thrive in their new roles. Once the transition is complete, leaders should take time to train employees and promote awareness of the latest changes to help people adjust smoothly.
What are the leading causes of change fatigue?
According to research from Cisco’s Annual Future of Work Report 2021, employees don’t receive sufficient information or assistance from leadership when presented with a disruption in their workflow.
With that in mind, other leading causes of change fatigue are as follows.
Leaders should look at the transition not as a ‘change that needs completing in a specific amount of time’ but instead as a transition state whereby employees need guidance to converge the new environment.’
Change can cause stress in the workforce. According to research, when people feel they have inadequate time to adjust to a change, they experience higher levels of work-related stress.
Preventing Change Fatigue
At the beginning of each project, leaders can point out to staff how they will need to address the issues to get the project off to a good start. This will allow your employees to avoid becoming stressed or frustrated when problems arise.
Embrace the Change
Leaders who embrace the change at work will help their employees to adapt to the change more quickly.
Leadership should be comfortable enough to talk about the process and any challenges that come with it. By being transparent, you can minimise the stress your employees will have to cope with and ensure that your team remains focused on what’s important.
Communication is key to managing change, and when it is unclear, people get confused and stressed. Leaders should understand that communicating well can help employees adapt and excel in their roles. They should prepare and practice their messages to maintain a positive tone and ensure they’re clear and concise.
When delivering the message, be as specific as possible, concisely explain your expectations and create an action plan to get the desired results.
Dealing with Change Fatigue in Your Employees
When you’re experiencing a high workload, you can quickly become overwhelmed by all the tasks in front of you; it’s actually one of the leading causes of mental health issues like anxiety and burnout.
While you may feel the tension and fatigue associated with change, you can take some steps to alleviate these feelings. Here are some suggestions on how to help your employees cope with their mental state and improve their ability to adapt to organisational changes.
Solve problems before they occur
A big step toward coping with change is solving the problems that will likely arise. That’s why leaders need to think about problems at the beginning of projects and communicate with employees about solutions.
One way to reduce stress is offering your employees professional training or consulting services, and investing in employees’ development and training experience, which can result in more productivity and employee retention.
Future-proof With Change Management
A digital economy demands constant change and the recruitment industry is no exception. Therefore, employees should always consider change management strategies when preparing for the inevitable changes likely to come with a digital transformation.
By implementing these suggestions, you’ll be able to create a happier, more productive workforce equipped to handle change.
With the proper training and effective planning put in place, your team will be able to thrive in the changes ahead.
If you’re interested in learning more about how you can better prepare your workforce for changes, visit our blog or—
Catch up on our Change Management webinars here.
TL;DR Key Takeaways
- Rapid changes in a recruitment company can lead to change fatigue in employees, which is a state of indecisiveness and anxiety caused by overwhelming uncertainty in the current situation.
- To combat change fatigue, leadership needs to consider the mental capacity of their workforce when implementing new initiatives and organisational changes. Leaders should communicate effectively and frequently to help their team adapt and thrive in their new roles.
- The leading causes of change fatigue are lack of information or assistance from leadership when presented with a disruption in their workflow, time restrictions, and performance stress.
- Leaders can prevent change fatigue by pointing out how to address issues at the beginning of each project, embracing the change, and being transparent about the process and any challenges that come with it.
- Employees can cope with change fatigue by solving problems before they occur, offering professional training or consulting services, investing in employees’ development and training experience, and considering change management strategies when preparing for the inevitable changes.