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So, you’ve discovered that your business needs a change — and that change is how your employees work. You’ve decided that they need to be more engaged, more motivated and that your leadership style has to change, but something just isn’t working. Your employees are resisting, almost on the urge of revolting, but why? I’ll tell you — they don’t know why they have to change. Change without reason, is as good as no change at all. All the tips in the world for how to engage your employees just won’t matter if you can’t implement them correctly. Here are a few steps that you can utilize to initiate change.

Offer Incentives for Change
Yes, sometimes, it’s necessary to offer candy to get the job done. In the business world, candy is anything from a cash incentive to an extra hour for lunch. In order to determine what kind of candy your employees would respond to best, ask them. That’s right, ask them. Send a survey to everyone in the office, and give a multiple choice selection of incentives they can select from. This will let you know what they are most likely to respond to. After you’ve found the right ‘flavor’ get them motivated to want it. Offer the incentive to the one who reaches the goal or embraces the change most effectively and successfully. This may mean a whole team or an individual.

Explain the Importance of Change
In order to get your employees to become more engaged, you have to explain why it’s necessary. Why do your employees need to change? What’s in it for them? What’s in it for the company? For example, if you think showing up for work 5 minutes early increases your sales by 15%, tell them this rather than simply asking them to show up early. Also, explain how that 15% benefits them. Will they eventually receive a higher pay? More benefits? Higher incentives? Whatever the case may be, explain away.

Ask for Feedback
If your quarterly sales are down and you know it’s due to your employees and not your sales strategy, ask them what they think they could do better in order to increase the sales percentages again. Resist the urge to jump in like a dictator and tell them to change everything without explaining why or asking for their opinions. Having good communication with your employees is one of the best ways to lower your turnover rate and improve their relationships with customers.

Getting your employees to embrace change isn’t as hard as it sounds, but if you want to do it right, you have to be understanding. When an employee is trained to do their job a certain way and then asked to change completely, they will become understandably frustrated. Ease their frustration by utilizing any of the above steps and be open and honest. It really is the best way forward.