A great article by the aptly-named Peter Economy for inc.com.

Buy-outs, downsizing, staff changes, market changes – there are so many ways a business can transform literally overnight.  While these moves often help a company remain competitive, they can also result in profound changes to organizational structure or other disruptions to the status quo. Helping your employees overcome the anxiety that comes along with such changes can be very challenging.

He lists 5 powerful ways that you can help:

1. Take time to watch and listen

If you know changes are looming–and they are for most organizations–take time to watch and listen carefully to your employees. Whether it’s a major restructuring or a modification to a well-established procedure, change (or even the anxiety over impending change) can unsettle your employees and negatively impact the workplace. Sometimes employees will express their anxiety directly to you, but other times their anxiety becomes apparent through changes in their behavior or performance. This is especially the case when change threatens their comfortable and stabile  routines. Take time to observe and listen to the pulse of your organization, and then take steps to deal with the anxiety that you may detect.

Read the full article here.