Like it or not, the economic slump is driving major changes in accounting firms. Firms are:

  • Merging or acquiring—or preparing for it
  • Rehiring with a new focus after having pared down
  • Investing in new technology that changes how the firm works and interacts with clients
  • Accelerating new business development

“Change is not just a buzz word, it is a necessity to understand how to use it to your advantage in today’s economic climate,” says CPE Link instructor, Sandra Wiley, COO, Boomer Consulting, who consults and teaches about managing organizational change.

“It isn’t enough to make a change,” adds Wiley. “Change must be managed carefully to minimize resistance and optimize adoption.”

Firms making significant changes need to understand that people resist change for many reasons:

  • They perceive changing as riskier than doing nothing
  • They feel loyalty to people associated with the old way
  • They have no models for the new way
  • They fear they lack competence in the new way
  • They feel overwhelmed
  • They fear that reformers have hidden agendas
  • They feel that the change threatens their identity
  • They fear a loss of status
  • They fear a loss of quality of life
  • They are skeptical and want proof that the new way is sound
  • They genuinely believe the change is bad idea
  • Then firms need practical strategies for managing the change that is already taking place.

    What’s the most challenging change facing you and your firm today? How are you managing it?