What Managers Should Understand About Change on the Floor

Change on the floor © Erik Back 2005

Lately I have been thinking about how change agents implement changes in companies. I have an academic background in strategy and management; I have studied a lot of theories and methods about change and it is all very exciting.

Most change agents are very good a making managers understand how important and how good change would be for their companies. The agents and managers meet to make a strategy to implement change. Until now everything is good. Both agent and manager speak the same language.

People on the floor don’t care

I have worked on the floor among non-academics and it has been a great experience. I have had jobs like warehouse operative and sales assistant; my family are all workmen. What I have experienced is that they put pride in their work and their craft; but they hate change and they especially dislike when academic managers tell them how to do their work.

Management has to find a way to gain trust and then initiate change in a non-academic language. The manager needs to understand that people on the floor do not care about LEAN, kaizen and positive thinking. They care about doing their jobs.

“Managers are just lazy academics sitting on their chairs all day drinking coffee!” I have heard this sentence many variations countless of times. Most people at the floor will agree with the statement and help maintaining that image.

If you want to initiate change you have to change yourself first. Next you have to show appreciation and communicate what you want. If people are pleased with you appreciation they will give you what you ask for.

My Personal Business Dimension

Money © Erik Back 2012

My blog on Intelligentsia.eu has been on vacation for a while. I simply didn’t know what direction to take in my writing. I have tried to start a new blog called Good Sense of Living that mainly focuses on food and recipes.

But yesterday I sat down thinking and asked myself:

  • Who am I?
  • What am I good at?
  • What defines me?

I have a lot of interests and that fact confuses me and that confusion is reflected in the great variety of topics in my posts. But all my interest and activities had to have something in common and yesterday I realised the obvious.

No matter what topic I stumble upon that catch my interest I always get ideas on how to exploit the opportunities of that topic. I always try to develop the ideas and see them as business opportunities. That is what I am good at and that is what most of my activities has in common.

Why is that obvious? – Because I am a skilled business economist in strategy and management. I have a MSc in business economics from Aarhus School of Business.

Like many others I have been on a long journey to discover myself and to find my purpose in life. I’m not there yet, but I think I finally found my passion and that is what I’m going to focus on for a while on this blog.

I will expand the blog with a new personal business dimension. I come from Denmark and I run a clinic for reflexology. I’m very good at giving treatments but I have realised that giving treatments does not drive me; I’m driven by the ideas that can develop my business.

I have started a blog in Danish about how to start a clinic and be successful. I will translate the key points of my posts and bring them on this blog.

What do you think? – Please comment my post and tell about your own experience.


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