Have you ever been involved in a workplace change management programme where you haven’t a clue what it’s really for?

Change is a fact of life for most organisations today, but examples of it being managed well are few and far between.

This is where PR and Communications steps in.

Communications professionals can ensure that employees are fully informed with any change that could be occurring.

But how can PR professionals make change a less painful employee experience than it is largely perceived to be?

  1. Use all communications and engagement channels at your disposal – create an open and positive dialogue using traditional and modern communications methods, such as written packs of information or face-to-face consultation sessions.
  2. Prepare for before and after the change – assessing and addressing organisational readiness for change is essential. Communication professionals must ensure a continued and consistent dialogue with staff and provide clarity so operations can resume smoothly.
  3. Put people first – ask questions and listen to answers, seek and use employee feedback and ideas that support the organisational direction of travel. Communicate the business reasons why some ideas could not be used to show recognition of people’s contributions.
  4. Accept that change is an emotional issue – PR professionals should communicate how the change will benefit staff, not just the business interests.
  5. Targeted engagement plans beat ‘one size fits all’ – organisations often have a complexity of roles, people and cultures with a variety of perspectives and reactions to. Communications can identify these groups and make sure they are catered for.

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