The Psychology of Outsourcing Absence & Disability Management
What Kind Of Change Leader Are You: An Optimist, Pessimist or Realist?
Change management is an early and very important consideration for organizations in the process of outsourcing their Absence and Disability Management programs. In my years working with organizations making that transition, I’ve encountered three distinct mindsets or “psychologies” among change leaders.
- Often thinks change will be easy and doesn’t need to involve other stakeholders who may be impacted.
- Doesn’t focus enough on project management strategy, particularly the early program planning and objective-setting phases.
- Isn’t methodical in building organizational consensus when shifting to a program supported with external administration, which typically brings with it redefined internal roles and accountabilities.
- Has a hard time focusing on the positives of change and as a consequence isn’t decisive enough taking action – being certain the whole process is going to fail.
- Doubts or frets over most aspects of implementation, convinced that something unexpected will derail the whole process
- Doesn’t trust others to meet their deadlines and micro-manages in the worst possible way – at the worst possible time – inevitably causing delays
- Understands that managing change is ideally about pragmatically managing risk for a greater reward through disciplined planning.
- Limits chaos and confusion through effective team communication, and in the process builds strong relationships with all stakeholders.
- Believe the challenges of trusting program delivery to a third party provider or shifting from an incumbent provider are worth the risk if you’re prepared, focused and methodical in implementation.
Which one of these profiles do you identify with?
In life as in business, we often shift between the modes of optimism, pessimism and realism, depending on the situation or the pressures we’re under. However, the successful change leader must absolutely be a realist, striking a balance between optimism for better rewards while managing the risks – not just of a change in process, but in relationships among stakeholders, particularly when outsourcing to (and trusting!) an external provider.
So, in light of all this, ask yourself how real is your commitment to effective change management? Are you the optimist? The pessimist? Or the realist who is truly focused on leveraging the experience and expertise of an absence and disability management provider for sustainable success?