Change is an inevitable part of doing business, especially in today’s volatile market. For those who lead teams of employees, this can mean being able to communicate this change to others in an effective and positive way. There are some important things to consider when in this position, because change can be taken in a negative way if not handled well from the start.
Here are four tips for voicing change in the best possible way.
Determine what is changing, and why. Before approaching the task of advising others about a big change, be sure to find out exactly what is changing and what the reasons behind it are. Change can come about as a matter of necessity or it may come about as a complete surprise. Either way, there is usually a good reason for it. Knowing what is behind a change will help you to be better able to communicate this to others when the time comes.
Decide when is the best time to announce a change. There is a right time to communicate a change, and then there is a bad time. The best course of action when deciding to discuss a change with others is to consider how it may impact those on your team. Will it be reasonable to wait a little until all the facts are in, or announce things as soon as you know? Each case is individual, so be sure to use caution when handling this matter.
Provide options for those affected by the change. Any change affects others, in both negative and positive ways, for the short term and for the long term. This change can create havoc if not handled well from a management perspective. When tasked with the communication of a change, no matter how minor it may seem, be sure to give those affected specific options on what to do after the fact. This is the fairest way to deliver this message, and it can soften the blow.
Use several methods of delivering the message. The good thing about communicating change in this day and age is that the message can be sent out over multiple channels simultaneously. Just be sure that this message of 100% consistent, when sending it out. Choose a verbal as well as a written version of the change as it is communicated for the best results. Provide a means for others to ask questions or get specific support afterwards.
Want to learn how to be a more effective communicator? Consider the advantages of attending Dale Carnegie’s “Dale Carnegie Course: Effective Communications & Human Relations/Skills For Success” course, which is coming up in January 2012. Register online today!