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Communicating Organisational Change
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Communicating Organisational Change






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  • This session is on COMMUNICATING ORGANISATIONAL CHANGE and we are going to deal with Customising the message to particular stakeholder groups Specifically addressing fear Dealing with resistance to change through communication Use of different media to get your message across Ultimately, message today will be “horses for courses” Please ask Q&A as we go.
  • But first, in case anyone underestimates the value of communication during the change process, ask yourself what you personally hate about change – of any kind, family, work... Usually it will be you are NOT IN CONTROL. Or to put a different way, you don’t have enough certainty and information. The importance of communication in a change initiative is – what do you want? Either Vision ,isunderstood, under communication of the message and inconsistency Or Pulling in the same direction Motivation
  • Let’s look at the magnitude of the job..... (go through slide) Conclude – it’s a Huge Task, but it has to be done, and done smartly
  • So to communicate in a smart way, are there any principles we can apply? Here’s 7 principles of communicating change described by John Kotter in Leading Change Describe Kotter Describe research for Leading Change Go through the 7 and expand YOU WILL SEE THESE ELEMENTS APPEARING IN THE CASE STUDIES I WILL TAKE YOU THROUGH
  • Let’s start by looking at how you “craft” the message for specific stakeholder groups The problem with wide spread communication is We hear what we want We hear what we need Expand on both Describe Maslow’s hierarchy and go to next slide
  • To summarise that process..... Identify the ONE message (different perspectives but ONE message) Then identify stakeholder groups and their needs Analyse the ONE message for their perspective and speak to it – SIMPLE Quantify the message – start at the top and cascade down – what does it mean for the organisation? For us? For me? Always look for the most appropriate forum or vehicle for each group – what works for one....? Proactively look for feedback, especially negative feedback – analyse coldly and deal with it quickly Always find the converted – let them, teach them to pass on the message – Much more CREDIBLE
  • Let’s now look at Addressing fears of specific stakeholder groups as they arise But firts let’s talk about some facts and myths about why people don’t listen? Go through – expand, lessons intellect? Resistance? Avoid pain? Why people don’t seem to listen? Maslow again ULITMATELY – it is about FEAR Managers used to telling – and dealing with their direct reports – but in change managers must address broader constituency because they affect their direct reports
  • So from that example what are the processes to address fears? One message – different impacts but dealt with one way (perspectives again) Allowed – INVITED – fear to emerge so it could be identified and quickly dealt with Answers to fear found from within the plan – or as near it, and plan further developed if necessary Continually use symbols – metaphor, analogy – make the message “every day” Explicitly find and explain seeming inconsistency – where real, root it out Lead by example – always explain – always publicly apologise
  • Let’s now talk about dealing with resistance to change. I won’t spend long on this because you should by now be seeing that resistance to change is all about... NOT ADDRESSING SPECIFIC STAKEHOLDER GROUP’S NEEDS If we ensure the change message is targeted specifically to groups, and that fear is appreciated and dealt with, resistance should lessen considerably. So, in order to deal with resistance we should Deal with different needs Deal with fear Ensure the vision and values are clear and motivating (sunny days ahead) Walk the talk Deal with inconsistencies and barriers Use the converted, and gradually isolate critics and let them wither on the vine
  • So to summarise, communication is critically important in any change effort. It can take a huge amount of time – but ultimately it is about value for time, not simply the amount. Still – how important is the change effort? Here are some lessons from the case studies Go through each (Expand)
  • We have looked at...

Communicating Organisational Change Communicating Organisational Change Presentation Transcript

  • Communicating Organisational Change Sending the right message to the right people at the right time
  • Communicating Organisational Change
    • Custom built messages
    • Addressing fear
    • Deal with resistance to change
    • Use of different media
    • What is appropriate to the specific stakeholder
  • The importance of communication in organisational change
    • A vision misunderstood
    • Under-communication
    • Inconsistent messages
    • vs
    • All involved have a common understanding of goals and direction
    • Motivation and co-ordination
  • Yup, she’s a BIG task!
    • Total amount of information given to an employee within 3 months –
      • 2,300,000 words or numbers
    • Typical communication about change in 3 months –
      • typically a 30 minute speech plus a one-hour meeting plus one memo and a newsletter article
      • 13,400 words or numbers
    • Typical communication about change –
      • 0.58% of total communication
  • 7 principles of communicating change
    • Keep it simple
    • Use metaphor, analogy and example
    • Use multiple forums
    • Repeat and then repeat again
    • Walk the talk
    • Explain seeming inconsistencies
    • Listen and be listened to
  • Crafting the message for the specific stakeholder
    • We hear what we want to hear
    • We hear what we need to hear
    • Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
  • Steps to “crafting” the message
    • One message?
    • Identify the stakeholders and their different needs
    • Identify the part of message that meets identified need – Keep it Short and Simple
    • Quantify the message down for the individual
    • Appropriate forums and vehicles
    • Demand feedback and repeat the message
    • Provide pathways for the converted to spread the message
  • Addressing the fears of specific stakeholders
    • Why do people not listen?
      • Limited intellectual abilities of lower-level employees?
      • General human resistance to change?
      • Is pain worth the gain?
      • Fear of the New – Managers have to address the broader constituency
  • How to address fears
    • One understanding of the impact of the message
    • Allow the fears to emerge
    • Find answers in the plan
    • Use metaphor and analogy
    • Explicitly address inconsistency
    • Lead by example (and provide a running commentary)
  • Deal effectively with resistance to change
    • Deal with the needs of different stakeholder groups
    • Deal with emerging fear
    • Motivate with Vision, Mission and Core Values
    • Walk the talk
    • Deal with inconsistencies
    • Let the individual critic wither on the vine
  • The importance of communication in organisational change
    • Pump up the volume
    • Understand 7 successful elements of communication
    • Engage through specific messages to different stakeholder groups
    • Address fear explicitly
    • Deal effectively with resistance
    • Use appropriate media
  • Communicating organisational change
    • Custom built messages
    • Addressing fear
    • Deal with resistance to change
    • Use of different media