You can never over-communicate! One of the best techniques for making your change successful is to make sure that everybody knows what’s going on and why. This fosters a feeling of ownership and commitment from everybody involved.
There is a lot of information out in the industry about communication — how to plan it, how to execute it, how to make sure it’s effective, etc.
Our objective is not to try and duplicate what’s already been said about how to communicate, what we want to make sure is understood from a wHolistic Change perspective, is the importance of why you communicate!
Here are some of the reasons for the different directions of communication flow that are needed:
- Sharing the vision
- Sharing the plan for reaching the vision
- Making sure everyone knows about the impact to their daily lives
- Persuade everybody of the value of the change to minimize resistance
- Align on a common goal
- Celebrate successes
- Acknowledge failures
- Communicate risks and issues
- Communicate status and progress
- Ask for support and involvement
Lateral / sideways communication:
- Discovery and idea generation
- Consensus building
- Brainstorming and problem solving
- Sharing solutions
- Make needs known
- Make suggestions for improvements
- Raise risks that have actually become issues and ask for resolution
- Share successes
- Share failures
Bottom line, how effectively you communicate can enable your change to happen smoothly, or can make it fail miserably. So; plan your communications, make sure you’ve identified communication channels for all of your stakeholders (top-down and bottom-up), create new communication channels if you need them, and then execute your plan!
One last key element of communication — remember that it’s two-way. It’s not only important that you send information out — be open and willing to hear what’s coming back and be prepared to take action on what you hear.