How to Communicate During a Change
When your organization is undergoing a big change, proper communication during that time is essential. If there is a shift in your organization that is going to affect a key community or your constituency, proactive communication is a must. The people who are going to be impacted by this change should not feel blindsided.
In this blog you will learn:
- What types of change might warrant this level of response
- Proactive communication strategies
- Which channels to communicate through
As the currents are changing, we don’t want you to lose your sea legs. Read on to understand how communication can be a major factor in getting you through this shift in your organization.
When is this type of communication needed?
How do you know when you need a communication strategy for a change in your organization? What types of change need this level of a response? Perhaps a new grant means extended offerings will be available for your clients, a new hire will change the personnel structure of your organization, a new development means the landscape will be changing, or a product launch that will make your clients’ lives easier is on the horizon. If the change or shift is going to impact your community or constituency and other stakeholders involved, the way it is communicated to each involved party must be handled delicately. And that often means outsourcing your communication needs.
How to use strategic communication as a change management strategy
The key to an effective communication strategy is maintaining the trust of your stakeholders. How can you accomplish this during a change? The answer is simple: through clear and proactive communication. If you’re concerned about how everyone involved will react, that’s fair. Different audiences will have different communication needs and it is helpful to identify those needs early on.
There are few things more powerful than understanding who to communicate with during the different stages of your organizational shift, and when. Especially if the shift is coming from the outside, clear communication about it will maintain and strengthen your leadership position. Timing is crucial with change management communication.
How to create a clear, proactive communication strategy
Now that you understand the importance of communication during a shift in your organization, it’s time to create a strategy. We’ve discussed the importance of clear communication, and it cannot be stressed enough how important it is that your communication is also proactive. If you’re not ahead of it, maintaining the trust of your community and stakeholders becomes more challenging.
Steps to creating a clear, proactive communication strategy:
- Identify which audiences to communicate and build trust with.
- Identify the order and timing to communicate with these audiences.
- Create clear messaging about current and future changes.
- Build and maintain a strong relationship with the media: it builds credibility.
Using social media in your favor:
Social media is a way you can actively stay connected with your community and should not be overlooked. For externally appropriate situations, it can be used as a tool to have a consistent stream of communication with people impacted by your change. You can communicate different updates in a timely and efficient manner. And, unlike the media (which is still a useful tool), you can 100% control what’s included in the message.
Communication is powerful and wielding, and creates the ability to prevent your change or shift from being a full-out crisis. Creating a clear and proactive communication strategy can allow your organization to maintain and build trust and relationships with the media, their stakeholders, and the community.
As your partner, Siren can create an effective and efficient strategy to help your organization properly communicate a change or shift that is coming.
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