Sunday, June 27, 2010

Good Communications Planning Delivers Good Change Management

Bookmark and ShareWith my involvement in the Canadian Society of Association Executives Ottawa-Gatineau Chapter, I’ve had the privilege of sitting on a number of committees including the chapter’s events committee. Year after year, one of the hottest topics remains change management in associations. Obviously, anytime one brings up the prospect of bringing about an important change in an organization, there are important governance issues to be considered. However, the mark of good organizations and how they manage that change in my mind comes from good communications planning.

By learning to identify stakeholders, select effective communication strategies and create ownership, today’s leaders can become successful change agents. Communication channels that allow those effected to feel as though their concerns are learned are the ones that facilitate the process most. With all that said and done, good communications planning will help an organization significantly navigate through what can otherwise be an organizational land mine. However, not all communication plans are created equally and many miss the mark. Communication should be more than just an occasional, sporadic activity.

If your current communications plan does not take into consideration how an important change will take place in a form that will engage everyone, the time to revisit it is now. In doing so, some of the best practices for ensuring everyone is on the same page include:

  • Developing a written communication plan to ensure that all of the following occur within your change management process.
  • Communicate consistently, frequently, and through multiple channels, including speaking, writing, video, training, focus groups, bulletin boards, Intranets all that is known about the changes, as quickly as the information is available.
  • Provide significant amounts of time for people to ask questions, request clarification, and provide input.

Change is a constant in today’s organizations and increasingly leaders are required to manage both planned and unexpected changes triggered by both internal and external events. Helping an organization maintain a sense of stability while championing change can be an extremely difficult challenge. On that note, Action Strategies has produced a number of very successful and thorough communications plans. If your organization is undergoing significant change management, you can learn more about our service by clicking here.


Mark A. Buzan, APR

Principal & Chief Magnifying Officer

Action Strategies

#3, 270 rue Champlain

Gatineau, Quebec J8X 3S1

819.770.2899 phone

http://www.actionstrategies.ca (Action Strategies website)

LinkedIn Profile: http://ca.linkedin.com/in/markbuzan

LinkedIn Group for Public Relations: http://tinyurl.com/nonprofitideas

LinkedIn Group for Government Relations: http://tinyurl.com/nonprofitlobbying

Please take a look at my just released book: Online PR and Social Media for Associations and Not-for-Profits -http://www.onlineprsocialmedia.com/associations


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