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Encouraging staff to stay committed to change

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Tip of the month

Encouraging staff to stay committed to change

When a manager hears the word “change,” what typically comes to mind are thoughts like these: “More work.” “There aren’t enough hours in the day.” “Maybe this will be an opportunity for improvement (or maybe it won’t).”

Along the same lines, when an employee hears the word “change,” what comes to mind are thoughts like these: “Here we go again.” “Why can’t we stick to one thing at a time?” “I am so tired of change—it never works.”

Committing to change is not easy, and sustaining it is an even greater challenge. 

If you are in need of a fresh perspective on the change process, consider checking out the book Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard, written by Dan and Chip Heath and published by Broadway Books.

The Heath brothers write about change-related research and explain their formula for successful change. They recommend:

  • Providing clear direction related to the change
  • Keeping people engaged in the change by making an emotional connection
  • Making the process/steps of change easier

Visit their website ( to access a multitude of free resources and get a peek into the first chapter of the book. 


Shelley Cohen, RN, MSN, CEN, Health Resources Unlimited, Adapted with permission.