April 12, 2024

Field-Tested Tips for Getting Workers to Embrace MindForge

Change, especially in the realm of technology, often meets resistance.

It's a tale as old as time, especially in the craft industry, where tradition and skill have long been the cornerstones of work. However, rolling out innovative software tools like MindForge can be beneficial in our ever-evolving digital age. These tools can lead to tremendous productivity gains and help you deliver great client work. But, when it comes to asking your field crews to adopt new technology, our experience, backed by numerous customer insights, reveals that it is common for field crews to resist. So how do you get buy-in? The answer is definitely not coercion and mandates. That only creates more long-lasting pushback. Here are four tips to help you successfully roll out MindForge to field employees. 

Convey the "Why"

Clearly articulate your "Why" for rolling out MindForge from the company and worker perspectives. Explain to workers why the company chose to adopt MindForge. For instance, one of our customers, who performs work for a utility, frequently encounters situations where the utility introduces new work requirements and expects immediate compliance from the contractor. Previously, the contractor encountered challenges in quickly communicating these updates to hundreds of hourly employees. As a solution, they turned to MindForge to address this issue.

When it came time to roll out, the contractor told its employees, "Why are we rolling out MindForge? We need to get you important information about your work quickly so we can meet our client's requirements. If we don't meet our client's requirements, they will find any company that can. The best way to communicate with you is through the MindForge App. "

Field employees who clearly understand the business need driving the adoption of MindForge will be more likely to accept using the app. 

Equally important is highlighting the benefits the worker will receive from downloading the app and receiving information through MindForge. We've conducted surveys with field crews, and a common theme is that employees often feel left in the dark regarding details about the company and the job they are working on. The app aims to keep them apprised of information beneficial to their work and success. A message from leaders, especially foremen, explaining how the app will benefit the employee will go a long way. 

Ask your employees, "Do you prefer to be more or less informed about your work and our expectations?" 

They'll likely respond, "I want to be more informed." 

"Great. MindForge will help you be more informed." 

Tailor the Experience

Send information through MindForge that helps the craft worker. When rolling out a new app, proving its value doesn't happen overnight. Some employees may wonder if the app is just another thing that wastes their time. Your actions with the app are the best way to prove its worth. Suppose you focus on providing employees with information and training that is relevant to their work and helps them. Even skeptical employees will find themselves wanting to download the app. 

For example, one of our customers had a job that was weather-sensitive. Every day, project leaders on site determined if work was "go" for the day. The company told employees they would receive a message through MindForge each morning telling them whether or not they should drive to work. For some employees, the job was more than an hour's drive. Sending this message through MindForge ensured supervisors notified everyone and didn't accidentally forget someone. The crew found this type of communication valuable, leading to a high adoption rate because, naturally, no one wanted to drive an hour to work only to find that the job was closed.

Set Realistic Expectations

Don't expect 100% adoption early on. The companies that experience the most success with MindForge expect to see only a portion of their workforce initially buy into MindForge. Let's face it: there will likely be a handful of employees who appreciate the app, some who will tolerate it, and some who will hate using it. That's normal. 

I've seen companies question success because they aren't reaching 100% of the crews on day five. That's not a realistic expectation. Meanwhile, 40% of their crews are engaged in receiving messages and see value in them. And that is 40% more communication than they had before. Leaders need to celebrate incremental success. Small, early wins are a strong jumping-off point for increasing engagement over time. 

Start with the early adopters and establish success with them. This approach will push adoption through to the skeptics when the skeptics see their colleagues as more informed. 

Example: Skeptic: "How did you know a taco truck was on-site at noon?"

Adopter: "I saw it in MindForge." 

Skeptic: "How do I download that app?"

Squash Myths

Be clear about what the app does NOT do. I've heard stories of pushback from employees where the employees have crafted their own reality about the app. Where there's an information void, employees will fill that void with whatever you leave to their imagination. And as I am sure you know, employees can be very creative. 

For example, some employees believe MindForge will allow the company to track their location. "I don't want the company tracking my every move!" 

The truth is that MindForge does not track employee locations. Create an opportunity for employees to air their grievances and perceptions of what the app can and cannot do. Listen to them and answer the questions. If possible, get ahead of the questions by conveying information to head off these myths before the rollout begins. 

Leverage Data

Use data to measure your rollout progress. MindForge allows you to visualize the number of people who have completed courses and viewed messages. Set data benchmarks for your rollout and then drive towards them. 

Here's a scenario. After the first month of using MindForge, you review the data dashboard and see that, on average, 40% of employees view messages. It's a good start, but you want more. Your ultimate goal is a 95% view rate. 

Set an intermediate goal of 60% view rate after month two. Now, consider what actions you can take to increase view rates during the next 30 days. Here's what I've seen MindForge subscribers do: 

  • Ask field leaders to convey "the why" in every morning huddle or meeting during the month. 
  • Hold a contest that requires employees to view a message to participate. A contest will likely attract additional adopters. 
  • Review the employees who aren't engaging and approach them to understand why. Use what you learn to adjust your message and dispel any misconceptions. 
  • Review the messages you've sent to ensure they are relevant and compelling to the employees, and double down on messages that will benefit them.

Review the view rates at the end of the second month to determine whether your actions positively impacted. Use the data to continue iterating your approach and drive the highest engagement possible. 

The path to integrating new technologies like MindForge within the craft industry is paved with challenges and immense opportunities. By focusing on clear communication, relevant content, realistic expectations, and data-driven strategies, we can turn resistance into acceptance and skepticism into advocacy. The digital transformation journey in the craft industry is not just about adopting new tools; it's about creating a more informed, engaged, and connected workforce that delivers high-quality results on time and budget. 

See what messages MindForge subscribers send to their employees. 

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