Communicating change more effectively to our employees
When you need to implement change at an organization, it’s never easy. Many times, executives don’t clearly or effectively communicate the changes in a timely, considerate or successful manner, which can leave employees feeling undervalued, underappreciated and burned out.
In fact, the Harvard Business Review notes that many employees believe that companies have failed to tell them about upcoming changes at their companies. The study it references, which was conducted by Quantum Workplace, surveyed over half a million U.S. employees and found that nearly one-third of them didn’t understand why the changes were occurring at their workplace.
To help combat this and increase success during organizational change, here are some strategies your company can use to ensure clear communication with employees, motivating them to embrace the changes taking place at your business:
1. Be honest about the changes coming to your organization.
The first thing your company should do if it’s undergoing a period of change and transformation is to always be forthright about any plans. This includes communicating clearly and without jargon or falsehoods of any sort. After all, employees are the lifeblood of your organization, and you want to show them mutual respect when issues arise that may affect their day-to-day workplace experience.
Work with the company’s leadership to draft a concise and well-explained narrative behind the reason(s) for the chance, a plan of communication and an organized approach to responding to employees who may have questions or concerns.
2. Speak with managers whose employees will be affected most.
To leverage a strong communication plan that will inform and motivate your employees, speak with any high-level managers ahead of time so they’re well-versed in what’s happening to the organization and thoroughly understand how they’ll be affected.
After all, managers have an added responsibility. Not only are they top-tier employees with greater value to your company, but they also serve teams of workers on a daily basis. They have a deep understanding of morale and can help keep spirits high through this challenging process of change. By looping these individuals into early conversations, you’ll be able to keep a greater portion of your company happy as the transformation occurs over the coming months.
3. Give your employees proactive advice on what to do.
As part of your communication plan, include actionable steps for employees to take. For example, let’s say you’re telling workers about a reorganization of talent that may include opportunities to move individuals to different teams. In this case, give your employees the information necessary to reach out to the right people at your company so they can do so efficiently.
When you provide proactive, actionable tips to set people up to succeed during a period of change at your company, they will feel taken care of and motivated to continue working for your organization.
4. Keep communication channels open with your employees.
A final piece of advice that will help keep your workers motivated? Always allow them to ask questions and express their concerns and comments to the leadership team in an appropriate and well-organized manner. Change and transformation at a company can be scary for some employees. Therefore, it’s important that you show them compassion and allow them to express themselves so they feel heard.
Plus, your employees know your company well and may even be able to offer input that can prove valuable and helpful as the transformation process occurs. As a result, your workers will feel empowered to help your organization succeed as it transforms for the best.