Essay Of Communication Essay, Research Paper
After the forum we saw little pockets where some of the leaders did try to implement changes based on the change model presented at the forum. What we found was everyone within our organization is definitely a boss watcher. Employees made ongoing appraisals about what they saw as really being important in the company by observing their bosses, which projects were receiving funding, and which employees were being recognized. The outcome for the leadership forum change model, was small change with no sustainability. Our leadership did not get the necessary skills needed to actually implement change within their organizations. Some of the leaders had creditability based on how employees perceived their business strategies as a win for them and the company. Other leaders were seen as weak and opportunistic, or using employees to make themselves look good. Bottom line for us is to teach the right skills to our leadership so when we say, Walk the talk ; we are all understanding what this looks like. The consequences to the metaphor, Walk the talk , has strong implications of inconsistency. As a whole our leadership is experiencing a major lack of trust within the organization based on not having the knowledge and skills required to make change within the existing system. This learning prompted our team and corporate communications to start investigating some of the key issues that were occurring within the organization and identifying why our leadership was weak in creditability when it came to Walk the talk . One of the major issues identified by employees on the floor began with communications. Leadership was not communicating a consistent message on anything that was going on within the Operations and Technology groups. Often we heard that leadership didn t share information, only parts of the information was shared, or there were so many variations to the information that no one knew who was on first, much less, how do we meet the business objectives for our work group and what are those objectives. So step one for Walking the talk needed to be a change process that focused on communicating any information within Operations and Technology. The Process Improvement and Training Team along with Corporate Communications began to develop a working template for all leadership within our organization to begin working from the same play sheet. Attached is a communications model that was developed to help our leadership start to operate from the same page in regards to communicating information within Operations and Technology: Guiding Principles for Communication 1. Consistent – Communications must be consistent across all vehicles and deliverers. 2. Accurate – All facts communicated must be accurate. Misleading information and inaccuracies can lead to frustration, disappointment and loss of credibility for the project. 3. Audience Specific – People are interested in knowing how a change will affect them, what they will have to do to adapt, and how Coors will help them to adapt. Communication will be tailored specifically to each of the target audiences.4. Timely – All messages must be delivered when they will mean the most and add the most value to the targeted audience. If people are informed too soon, they will lose interest and forget. If they are informed late, they will feel neglected and resort to the grapevine and rumors.5. Participation by Those Involved – Messages conveyed in-person by trusted and experienced co-workers and peers within Coors are likely to be well received. Whenever possible, identified sponsors should be involved in the delivery of the communications.6. Integrated Into the Context of the Big Picture – People are often more committed when they understand the big picture and understand how their effort contributes to that big picture. All communications should be conveyed such that there is a logical fit to the big picture (e.g., Don Brown s Vision, DSI, CQS, business goals and objectives, benefits realization).
7. Focus on Next Steps – Communications will always include the next steps and the interim goal(s) to be achieved.8. Creative – Communications should be creative, using different ideas and approaches in order to maintain interest, generate enthusiasm and be effective with a wide variety of audiences. 9. OVER COMMUNICATE. Communications Check-ListUse the following questions and points to check the quality of your communication effort. The Project Sustainability Plans will help in the initial phases. 1. Identify major project events.· Timeframe for changes? Do the communication activities correspond to the dates of the changes? 2. Answer the following questions: · What is occurring?· Who is impacted? · Why is it occurring? · When are changes occurring? · Where are changes taking place?· When do targets need to know about changes? 3. Draft a Communications Event Matrix (see template):· Message?· Audience?· Purpose of the Communication?· Key Themes?· Sender?· Responsible?· Feedback Mechanisms? 4. Ensure 3 types of communications used:· Mass communication for general audiences ( Courier, Chain Link, Supervision, etc.) Use this to present an overview of changes. · 1 on 1 – Identify key people in organization. (TLs, CTLs, or MITs) Meet w/ these people 1 on 1 and coach them. Set expectation that they will spread the word. · Executive/ Organization communications – Face to Face, cascading communication and sponsorship from Directors to Team Leads to Operators. Ensure that it does not occur through general distribution of power point presentations. Targets must hear from people they report to (or ultimately report to). 5. Feedback Mechanism· Ensure feedback mechanism in place.· Use Employee Hotline or facilitated sessions to capture concerns.· Ensure timely responses to target are issues. 6. Over CommunicateHarvard Business School Professor John Kotter, in his book Leading Change, suggests that change projects should over communicate with impacted personnel by a factor of 10 to 100. 7. See # 6You can not communicate enough. Now when people start saying this group is not walking the talk when it comes to communication there is a specific strategy and process that allows us to go back and look at what steps within the process may have been missed. One of the wins from this process included: Merit pay increase announcementPrior to this change process, our Corporate Communications and Benefits department would have communicated this information without consulting Operations and Technology. When announcing this change, focus groups of hourly employees were asked for input on how to best communicate the merit increase. Some key points they asked for included:ü Tell us the truthü When benchmarking our pay who are the companies we benchmarked withü How does this impact our gainsharingü Do all three facilities get the same increaseü Why now in July instead of year endThe difference we experienced by incorporating some of this information and more on the front end was the following:ü Zero complaints to the Senior Staff Hot Lineü All potential questions were answered on the front endü Our employees were not angry, because they got all the information on the front end of the processü Employees saw results based on their input the benefits and communication departments did listen to their input and incorporated it in the final communication to all employees Walked the talk (engaging our employees in the business)The established strategy has made some impact on trust and consistency but we have also found there is a long way to go in establishing consistent communications within the organization. There is still a wide gap between Corporate and Operations, as we are slow in establishing the change process to lessen the gap around communications.