August 4, 2011 at 4:17 pm #137342
In thinking about this week’s question on strategic communications, I’ve consulted two great references:
• “Why Transformation Efforts Fail,” an article by
John Kotter published in Harvard Business
Review (April 1995).
• Leading in Times of Significant Change and
Uncertainty: Straight Talk from Senior Leaders,
a book by Joe Raia, founder and President of
Glimmer Glass Consulting and Training. This
book contains some great quotes and practical
advice from senior leaders on how to more
effectively lead during times of change.
Top Ten Strategies for Strategic Communication
1. Make sure that town hall meetings and one-on-one conversations provide not only a forum for senior leaders to explain strategy, but also serve as a place where specific questions can be answered.
2. Several specific suggestions for disarming the rumor mill:
• Communicate early and often
• Be as honest and transparent as possible
• Share as much information as possible
3. Continually reinforce the core mission and vision, and confirm what is relatively most important for people to focus on.
4. It’s important that leaders check on what staff understood and interpreted from a key message that they delivered.
5. Use email effectively to communicate to a broad audience.
6. Help staff understand how the mini-vision fits into the larger picture.
7. Tailoring messages for specific audiences (including using one-on-one meetings to communicate up), emailing a broader audience to reinforce key messages, and conducting town hall meetings that are two-way dialogues are great ways to communicate key messages and get critical input.
8. Take steps to reinforce the message by communicating through different kinds of media.
9. Create a business case for change by speaking a language of numbers.
10. Align recognition efforts with organizational goals and objectives.
What are some specific ways that leaders have communicated with you?
What challenges are you facing in your organization when it comes to strategic communication?
August 4, 2011 at 6:50 pm #137344
Our organization has undergone a great deal of retirement-related turnover. As a result, I suspect that there is a gap between what management thinks employees know already, and what they actually know.
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