By Kyle Strang

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

No one likes change.

I don’t think this is necessarily true. Without a doubt, individuals find comfort in routine and consistency. Whether it’s eating the same thing for lunch everyday, or completing the same paper work orders they have for 5, 10, or 20 years. This familiarity can give a sense of control and it’s one less thing to worry about.

When I hear “no one likes change.” I conjure up images of people being resistant and actively fighting back change. When I think about business process and technology changes within a utility, it’s not that no one likes change. I think it’s more accurate to say that no one likes change that’s thrust upon him or her.

Technology Changes

“I think it’s more accurate to say that no one likes change that’s thrust upon him or her.”

‘Everyone’ knows that change is inevitable. Change is what leads to more resilient service delivery in an environment with increasingly severe weather. Change is offering customer’s new ways to interact with their utility through technology – whether that is bill pay apps, consumption data, or outage notification systems.

When you implement a new business process or technology without buy-in from the end-user, you risk resistance. Resistance isn’t insurmountable, but it is inefficient and costly when you consider the time and resources needed to work through it.

“When you implement a new business process or technology without buy-in from the end-user, you risk resistance.”

Many utilities are fortunate to have long-tenured employees on their field service teams. There is a wealth of geographic, functional and technical knowledge within these employees. If your organization is considering a business process or technology change that directly affects this group, don’t consider them an obstacle. Change in an organization is an opportunity for all stakeholders to work together towards a common goal.

“Change in an organization is an opportunity for all stakeholders to work together towards a common goal.”

When you move away from forcing change on someone to building collaboration, buy-in, and identifying common goals, you eliminate an ‘us vs. them’ scenario and increase your overall chances of success.

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