It is inevitable that when you help a client start to introduce a change such as systemisation into their business they will meet with resistance from their employees.

Most of their employees will be comfortable with the way things are.  They work willingly enough but if things go wrong they feel no sense of responsibility – it’s your client’s company and your client’s problem.  After all, they think, your client must be making lots of money as the owner of the business.

Their reasons for coming to work are quite different from your client's reasons.  As a good manager and leader coached by you, your client will strive to engage them, develop them and reward them properly but no matter how good a manager they become, the majority of their workforce will feel little sense of ambition for someone else’s business.  It may also be the case that they feel little sense of ambition for themselves either, other than earning more – that is why they are in a small business.  None of them will share your client’s drive and frustration.

This gives you and your client a problem.

Your client is trying to convince their employees of something that to them is perfectly logical and reasonable:  In order to keep growing the business they need to run it differently so they want employees to take more responsibility.  Yet to employees this is threatening.  Their performance is going to be measured.  They are going to be held accountable for their results.  At best this means working harder; at worst it means that they will not be able to cut it and will lose their job.  No wonder they resist change.

Trying to make this change happen across the whole business at once can work if most of your client’s direct reports and other employees are positive about their vision and clearly willing to take more responsibility.  Often this happens where you have a lot of new staff or the whole business is young.  Usually, however, you will have staff who are mostly opposed to change, or at best neutral.  Overcoming this resistance in a single person is tough; if you give them the opportunity to form a group consensus in opposition it becomes very tough and some business owners give up, becoming a hostage to their employees.

Successful business systemisation is above all about successful change.  It is not enough to convince your client that he or she needs to change.  It is not enough to convince them that their business needs to change.  Your coaching toolkit has to have the tools to help your client manage change in a reluctant workforce – otherwise you run the risk of ending up with a client who is a hostage to their employees.

BusinessCoachKit provides these tools so you can navigate them through these problems - and retain them as a client.