Social Media For Change Management Practitioners
Planning a Change in your Company – Find out how Social Media Can Help
Change Management has been around as an industry since the early nineties. But it’s growing in importance as the world is changing around us. Change Management is a multi-disciplinary practice, even more so since we’ve entered the Digital Age.
We do so much online nowadays and computers are making it easier to keep up to speed. Communication is easy and immediate, offering us great opportunities to become more efficient and more effective in everything we do.
We’ve probably all worked in companies that have undergone changes, and in doing so we’ve had experience of how the organization (and the job) has changed as a result.
This means that we’ve been able to see that the way in which the change was implemented, has had a direct effect on whether the change was successful or not.
With organizations racing to change and keep up with the changing markets, the changing economy and a changing world, some fall by the wayside and go out of business (or suffer huge losses) if the change or restructure is not managed effectively.
Change is necessary in all organizations, but the way in which it is initiated and implemented can make all the difference as to whether or not the change is successful – and how much (if any) resistance there is to that change.
Effective change leadership is essential to provide clear guidelines to employees as they cope with the change process. There will always be resistance to change in any organization. Recognising and dealing with this is a key issue in change management.
Resistance to change can come in many forms and for many reasons:
- People may be worried about their job security, leading to a negative attitude towards the change.
- People may be concerned that their roles will change and that they will not have the skills or training they will need, leading to a lack of self-confidence.
- Employees who are worried about their work or unhappy in their position will become stressed by the change, leading to lower morale, lower productivity and disorientation.
- Change resistance may come from external stakeholders, such as clients or suppliers who may need to change some of their procedures.
Turn and Face the Strain – Ch-ch-changes
People react emotionally to change. An effective Change Leader will know this and recognise just how crucial it is to have a two way communication system to mentor employees and other stakeholders while they cope with the process of change.
John Kotter’s ‘Eight Steps to Successful Change’ includes Step 4; Communicating the Vision for Buy-in. Kotter’s view on communication is enlightening:
‘Great communicators have an appreciation for positioning. They understand the people they’re trying to reach and what they can and can’t hear. They send their message in through an open door rather than trying to push it through a wall.’
A New Way to Communicate Change
Change Managers nowadays have access to a uniquely effective method of communication – Social Media. Effective use of Social Media Strategies can enable more effective change within an organization – one that has positive results for the company.
Social Media represents an effective new communications tool for Change Managers to hold collaborative dialogue with stakeholders, both internal and external. It has the benefits of being organic, transparent and authentic. Social Media will allow you to use community-driven, user-generated content and involve everybody in the conversation about the transformation.
Social Media – Everybody’s Doing It
Your Social Media presence must be welcoming and open – a true dialogue with employees and other stakeholders to promote free speech (your opportunity to gain valuable insights into the thoughts of your audience).
Creating an approachable persona to interact with others is vital to inspire confidence in the transformations taking place.
You will need to be honest about difficulties and mistakes (and how you intend to handle them) – a great way of building loyalty.
Encouraging employees to join in the conversation via Social media is a powerful means of engaging them in deep and meaningful dialogue and making them feel part of the exciting changes that are being implemented to bring progress to the company as a whole.
Turn Your Liabilities into Assets
Don’t be put off by the possibility that people will make negative comments – they will, regardless! Employees will always have negative things to say about the changes – and Social Media will allow you to see these comments and address them openly and honestly.
This means that you can deal with potential problems as they arise, instead of when they have already developed into a real problem. Listening to and addressing these negative issues may lead to positive improvements which in turn, will raise morale.
Cheap as Chips
Social Media is a low cost method of communication which will result in active dialogue with immediate feedback and the resulting benefits:
- Increased Trust
- Increased Advocacy
- Increased Affinity
- Increased Satisfaction
- Reduced Complaints
- Reduced Resolution Times
- Reduced Negative Sentiment
At Project Laneways we specialise in training business professionals in the skills they need to ensure success. Our Change Management Practitioner Course will equip you with the skills and tools you need to lead change within your organization to ensure a successful outcome.
If you’d like to become an internationally recognised Change Management practitioner, check out our Change Management course details here, or call us on Melbourne 03 9038 9236