Being an agile business is essential for growth — but it often includes changes that can slow you down. How can you improve momentum and productivity through company transitions? Effective communication is key.

Your company may need to introduce new ways of doing business, update processes for a hybrid workforce, or ensure a smooth merger integration. To successfully manage important changes, you need to look closely at how, what, and when you communicate.

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6 Practical Steps for Communicating Corporate Change

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6 Practical Steps for Communicating Corporate Change

For many years, we’ve helped high-performing businesses successfully navigate transitions. Here are some best practice tips you can immediately put to work.

1 – Be prepared to overcome resistance

When you roll out major change, you’re likely to encounter some resistance. That’s not because people are trying to make your job harder.  They may be stalled out by concerns fueled by uncertainty, perceived risk, job security, etc.

Think about change from an internal team’s perspective. Plan communication strategies that proactively address concerns, to show people you’re paying attention to more than just logistics.

2 – Create a core message about the change

To build momentum for a change, you need a concise, compelling story that gets people motivated to help make it happen. Create an easy-to-remember statement (2-3 lines is good) that highlights the benefits of the change (for employees, customers, the business), and include a call to action so people know what to do.

Make sure the core message is delivered consistently whether it’s shared in email, internal portals, or verbally in meetings. If needed, create a similar customer-facing version for use in talking points, call scripts, social media, etc.

3 – Identify an executive champion

To build buy-in for a corporate change, employees need to know management values it. Engage a senior leader to champion the initiative, using the soundbite messaging. Even if they aren’t involved in the daily activities, they’ll be an important voice to advocate the importance of making the change successful.

Your executive sponsor can spread the word in virtual town hall meetings and short video clips shared on various channels within the company.

4 – Recruit influencers

In most companies, every line of business has its own way of doing things, so to help you advance a broad corporate change, take a grassroots approach. Identify the opinion makers, and develop a written outreach plan to connect with the ten people who will have the greatest impact on whether the change will be successfully adopted.

5 – Make it easy for everyone to learn about the change

The easiest way to get employees on board is to ensure they understand why change is happening, how they can benefit, and what they need to do. Make this information available on internal digital channels, in team meetings, even signage at the office. If appropriate, develop a training program that helps people learn and adapt more quickly.

6 – Promote inclusivity and collaboration

Sometimes the best ideas come from unexpected places.  Find ways to increase cross-functional collaboration, tap your agency partners for ideas, and more. Encouraging everyone to have a voice can be a powerful way to improve (and even speed) the transition through corporate change.

Successful corporate change relies on communicating the right messages at the right time.

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6 Practical Steps for Communicating Corporate Change