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January Newsletter...

"Embrace Change Cautiously"

All of us at CCS wish everyone a Happy and Prosperous New Year.

Steps Toward Change

This newsletter follows the theme started in the December Newsletter of the need to evaluate everything in this new economic climate.

Several recent discussions with clients have been focused on the subject of “Change”. Some change is good, and some bad, but everyone agrees that some change is always needed. We just need to keep an open mind and evaluate each proposed “improvement” to see if it really is a “change for the better”.

As we get busy, we are more likely to resist any suggestion of change. Instead, we should stop and see what the real benefit of the change is. Remember, that change does not always benefit the individual immediately, but it may have a substantial benefit elsewhere in the organization.

If an organization benefits due to a positive change, so will the individual.

Making Changes

It is not only on the shoulders of the individual to make the change. The organization must also be willing to encourage and support the change. Managers should listen for ideas from their staff and not be afraid of taking a chance. Too often, we stay with the status-quo just because it is the perceived “safe solution”.

The world, especially technology, is changing every day and we must embrace those parts that benefit us.

SouthWare made 2 major changes in the last 18 months. First, were the interactive Web screens to simplify our access to information and, in their words, “do more with less”. Next, they changed their upgrade model to an annual subscription service that releases a small number of changes on a monthly basis instead of issuing a 100 page “book” on the changes in each “new annual revision”.

Now, a year later, just making a few changes and learning some new processes, the benefits are really beginning to be seen. Integrating e-mail into our daily operations has proven to be a huge time and cost saver.

Evaluating Change

Just as dangerous as the “resistance to change” is the opposite that says “we must change”. Just because it is the latest gadget or idea does not mean it fits well into the business environment in which we find ourselves.

As the title says, we must “embrace change” BUT we must evaluate it first.

  • What will the change cost in terms of manpower or expenditure?

  • What is the benefit in saved time or cost?

  • Will it improve customer relations or harm them?

In your organization you must constantly listen to ideas for new procedures or systems. Certain resistive remarks are warning signs of the need to actively communicate the real reason behind the need for change. Figure out where you will encounter the most resistance to new ideas within the department or company and plan the best way to deal with it. Constructive resistance is good as it forces us to better evaluate the proposed change.

In traveling to my clients and in some cases “dragging them into the 21st century”, I have faced many of the resistance phrases.

Some of the most common examples are:

  • That’s how I was taught.

  • We have always done it that way.

  • I don’t have the time to do/learn that.

Then there are the “good” phrases months later:

  • Why didn’t you make us do this sooner?

  • I thought the customers would not like it, but they love it.

  • I could never go back to the old way.  (This is my personal favorite!)

So the lesson of this is – When we tell you about a “cool feature” please think about it even if it’s only for a moment before you go back to being “too busy”!

Would you like us to do a web session on the new e-mail improvements, or some other feature?

Do you want a staff training session?

Please use our knowledge of SouthWare and business systems to help improve your productivity.


CMSS Feature Spotlight
Easy Customer Emails

Current CMSS subscribers can now send out a current customer aging, statement or selected open invoices with a "click of the mouse".  Sending customer updates via email is now quicker and easier then ever.

If you're not familiar with this new feature, call us and we can walk you through how to use it.

The more you know about your software -- the more it can help you.


SouthWare is compatible with Windows 7.

  SouthWare's Revision 15 and above is compatible with Windows7.