Delivering news about changes within a company can be difficult at times, even for the most seasoned leaders. However disseminating bad news is infinitely more difficult so here are a few things to bear in mind & use as a guide when this burden falls upon you in order to communicate such news effectively..
I Start from the top, while avoiding leaks at the bottom sending the message that the reasons are important
- It reassures employees that they too are valued while enlisting their help to turn things around for the better
- Use town hall meetings in order to engage in frequent dialogue between leaders & employees
- When delivering bad news there is nothing worse than equivocation or mixed signals
- Don't dissemble minimize, or hide issues
- Remain cool & don't reflect panic; people take their cues from leadership- be the firm reassuring presence in face of crisis
III. Bring all supervisors & managers along keeping them fully informed along the way
- They can have immediate interaction with your employees more easily
- They can provide easier “facetime” taking questions & gathering feedback
IV. In your explanation include 'why' & 'who;' speak to reason & process
- You have to answer the questions "why is this happening" & "how will these changes help support the organization & its business goals"
- People will follow you only if they get the sense that you know where you are going so you must inform them in order to inspire them
- Reflect the fact that leadership is on top of things & has a clear plan going forward
V. Be personal; don't rely on email or [worse], social media to deliver the news
- Delivering bad news in cyberspace almost guarantees that things will be mistaken and rumors will start to travel. In a world of viral communication, this could make matters worse