Date: 24 November 2009
Release/Embargo: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Title: Changing times require solid change communication
Chief Strategic Communication Officer
011 706 8149
Changing times require solid change communication
Many companies have recently told us of the significant changes they are undergoing – from new CEO
appointments; retrenchments; the launch of a new mission statement; moving offices and changing
locations; to adapting core business operations to changing times. These are changes that will impact on
all staff members and communicators must manage the perceptions of these stakeholders. To get to a
point of change, companies need to go through a transition. Transitions are tricky to manage as the
climate of the organisation can change during such times. So how can communication facilitate this?
These changes are of significant importance to communicators, who need to assist senior management
in implementing the transition on the ground. What this means to communication managers is months
of planning, campaign management and creating an environment conducive to the open exchange of
ideas to ensure staff understand and are open to these developments.
So what does this mean for communicators?
Changing times means communicators need to communicate clearly, concisely and effectively with staff.
To facilitate this change, communication must revert back to the old adage “To be heard, listening is so
important”. It allows people to take the first step in understanding change by verbalising their feelings in
a solid two-way communication environment. People have an inherent need for information, and
particularly details and insights into specific changes that will affect them personally, either directly or
indirectly. Finally, it is also important to be very clear about who needs to know what information and
how will you get that message out – i.e. understand your audiences and the manner in which