Monday, May 19, 2008

Communicating through change

Thank goodness I don’t talk about change management. I would seriously lack integrity if I did as we have had so many communication challenges here at Thought Leaders.

I apologise if the changes have affected you, and if I’ve been poor at communicating these changes in advance.

I was sitting with a group of Thought Leaders from the Brains Trust and even they (the inner circle if you like) felt the impact of poor communications through change.

It got me thinking about the assumptions we make about the quality of our communications. Here are some tips:

  1. Say lots of things to lots of people. If you don’t know what to say, say that you don’t know what to say!
  2. Summarise what you’ve said when you are saying it.
  3. Ask the listener/audience to tell you what they heard you say.
  4. Ask them to spread the word if they can, to assist.
  5. Repeat as necessary.

Creel the entrepreneurial Mentor adds:

“At the end of a meeting send a summary via email of what was discussed. If appropriate, ask them to send you a summary of what they thought was discussed. If there is a difference - pick up the phone, communicate more and then send a clarification. I know it sounds like extra work, particularly when you are busy, but I find the work that is created when you don’t is much greater.”

In short, the quality of communication is determined by the response you get, not the fantasy you create in your mind about what was communicated.

Check for understanding.

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