Communicating Change Requires a Disciplined Approach
February 28, 2018
As organizations try to adapt to continuous change inside and outside their walls, many will look to change management experts to guide the process of getting employees to work in new ways. It’s human nature to seek stability, and many employees will be slow to accept inevitable change. By relying on a rigorous set of processes, however, organizations can implement change at a pace that matches their business needs.
Balancing information with inspiration as you roll out your messages is essential. A recent webinar hosted by ThoughtForm, Inc. offered insights for delivering change communications in an effective sequence. The first phase focuses on painting the picture of why the change is necessary. Leaders should then move to inspiring their audience to create the feeling that the organization has considered all options and chosen the right path. Only then can communications and training help people understand their role in the change and the benefits they will personally derive from the change.
Change management leaders should incorporate other best practices into their strategies:
• Rely on storytelling. The consultants at ThoughtForm reminded us, “If you can tell a story in a vivid way, your audience will feel like they are living it.” Stories create a connection with your audience and inspire action.
• Maximize visual communications. Pictures are key to getting people to remember your messages. Look around for the symbols that are used throughout your organization to help employees sort through complicated information.
• Provide managers with a playbook. Direct managers play a critical role in supporting employees through any change. Make sure they are equipped with the right information and understand where to direct questions that need in-depth answers.
• Design a process for timely feedback. Speed can be a differentiator when you want to see change in the workforce. Before you start any communications campaign, design a process that will deliver responses when employees need them.
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