Pandemic Lessons: Drive Change In Five Stages

Jarret Jackson
4 min readApr 29, 2022
Are you prepared to help your team adapt to a more open world? | Photo by Alexas Fotos from Pexels

With the announcement that children ages five to eleven are now eligible to be vaccinated against COVID-19, many workers are anxious about what changes their organizations may make in 2022. In some organizations, people were complaining about change fatigue before the pandemic. Now, adaptability and resilience have become a required skillset for all of us. In this next-phase of the pandemic, how can we learn from the increased humanity we’ve all shared to continue to be more thoughtful and less reactive when it comes to organizational change?

Dr. Michelle Somerday, founder and CEO of Neo-Strategic, a leadership development and executive coaching firm, suggests that “now is the time for leaders to summon even more energy to help guide their teams and organizations out of the pandemic — a transition that may be as tough as any over the past 18 months.” While some people may feel a sense of relief with more re-opening, leaders must recognize that others will need time, space, and support, as this too is a period of change. That means, leaders, that now is the time to elevate your organization despite the challenges; not a time to celebrate surviving the storm.

5-Stages of Organizational Change

Good news: The pandemic has been a great training ground for just that. As an executive coach, Dr. Somerday works with leaders to help them improve their own self-awareness, resilience and ability to adapt to new situations. Coaching executives through the pandemic has given her the ability to help her clients with their individual personal development as they drive their organizations through the changes imposed by the pandemic and the opportunities they have sought as a result. In many ways, facilitating change is her business.

In Dr. Somerday’s experience, there are five stags that she has seen her clients move through when they are faced with change. Understanding these might just help you transition your team or organization to a new “post-pandemic normal” more smoothly and effectively.

Stage One: Clarity and Transparency

The first step is to understand the problem: gain greater clarity on what is known, and seek greater transparency into the unknown. Asking questions instead of…

Jarret Jackson

I write about strategy, adaptive leadership and managerial psychology.