Let’s face it: Many of us shy away from change. The unknown can be scary and unsettling.
We forget change can be refreshing and motivating, beneficial and healthy for business. From both top-down and bottom-up, it’s imperative to adapt to our constantly evolving, fast-paced world.
Whether it’s a new technology, leadership change or business acquisition, companies must develop and implement an effective change communications program.
One size never fits all, so listen to your employees and discover what they need to perceive change as positive and champion the new cause.
Consider the following three keys to unlock the best potential outcome for your internal change communications program:
1. Know your audience.
We have more employee data and analytics than ever before. Take advantage of these insights alongside what you know from interacting with your team. Recognize their fears and motivations and use these insights when developing your communications.
2. Tell your audience members what the change means for them. So what?
My company adopted new software. Okay, cool. Why should I care? What's in it for me (WIFFM)?
People need a sense of purpose to drive their adoption of change. Explain the company’s vision and how this new software will help get it there, and create and communicate recipient-oriented messages to lessen fear and build excitement. If you kick off the new software and communicate the benefits for employees and customers – from the start – you may be amazed by how quickly they accept, embrace and advocate the change.
3. Alleviate fears.
Embracing change involves overcoming fear. To align your people to your new vision, make it as easy as possible for your employees to transition. Remember to focus on benefits above all else.
Utilize an omni-channel communications approach to ensure your employees receive a clear and consistent message from every communications vehicle. Send positive messages to the right people at the right time.
It's often a challenge to adapt, but feeling like you're a part of a team that will support you every step of the way will get your company to where it needs to be.
A happy, optimistic culture - with confident executives leading the way to innovation and change - will naturally overflow into your change communications program.
Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine. Embrace these change communications approaches and keep your team moving forward.