“Will I still have a job when this is done?”

"Will I still have a job when this is done?

While working with a client on a new AMS implementation recently, the executive director told me she was surprised to hear her staff ask: "With all the improvements and automation that the new AMS brings, will I still have a job?"

I've been at this for almost 25 years now, so that question didn't surprise me as much as it surprised her. In fact, it may be even more common than we think it is, as many staff may think it but not actually express it out loud.

But the reality is that in almost every project that I've ever been involved in, there was little to no risk of staff being eliminated by the new technology. And the simple reason is that  almost every client I worked with had more work or projects or ideas than they could possibly pursue with current staffing. Implementing new technology meant they would be able to free up time for staff to pursue these other projects.

The key is to communicate to staff early and often that the purpose of the new technology is not to eliminate staff (unless that IS the reason, which may happen on rare occasion) but to redirect staff energies to higher value activities.

So if you've got staff asking "Will I have a job when this is done?" make sure you address that concern quickly and honestly.

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