If you’ve ever worked for any sort of corporation, you know that organizational changes can happen at the drop of a hat. What’s more is that most changes happen unexpectedly, oftentimes blind-siding employees. What’s been in talks for months seems out of the blue for employees. Conspiracy theories start to form is the company getting sold? Are we getting laid off? Should I start looking for a new job? These are all concerns that employees have when a new organizational announcement takes place. But what if you could avoid the doubt, uncertainty, and possible employee churn?
In this post, we share a few ways on how you can reassure your employees everything is business as usual after an organizational announcement.
Set the story straight
Sure, there is probably going to be some sort of press release when leadership in your organization hits. A press release circulated on social media is most likely something that your employees will see. Beat the press release to the punch and send an internal email to employees first to explain the situation. Whether it comes from the C-level executive who runs the part of the organization that you belong to or the CEO themselves, make sure that your employees know what’s going on before the world does. This eases tension from employees and make them fully aware of what’s going on. Employees will feel more at peace and will be able to carry their days out as usual without unnecessary stress over the status of their employment.
Have an company-wide meeting
So maybe your organization got a new CEO. While your employees might have a thousand reactions and questions, hold a meeting to address them. Shortly after the announcement takes place, hold a company-wide meeting where any concerns are addressed. And it doesn’t have to be so formal Consider a “town hall” style that make it more comfortable and easier for employees to express their concerns openly and honestly. This type of meeting also gives the new organizational leader a chance to give employees a first impression of who they are and what they want to accomplish, setting the stage for their tenure as a company leader. If done successfully, employees will have the context to understand why this decision was made and how it can benefit everyone company wide.
As an organization, you want your employees to trust its leadership. And the best way to establish trust between employees and leadership is honest and transparent communication. Don’t sugar coat the truth when talking with employees. People would rather you “give it to them straight” than not. You would be surprised just how much this affects the morale of the people. As a whole, your employees will react and feel more positively about the company and its value when you are honest with them. And employee positivity leads to a higher output as well as a higher employee retention. The last benefit that transparency has in a corporate setting is that it helps your employees establish the company’s reputation externally. Transparency can lead to a positive word of mouth from employees, which is free marketing and publicity for the organization all coming from employees!
As we touched on before, your employees are going to have questions when it comes to the fate of their employment status or that of the company. When addressing these questions, make sure you are responsive in doing so. Companies approach this in a number of ways, such as an FAQ guide, a meeting, and more. The key is to make sure you aren’t ignoring your employees and their questions. This makes employees feel like their concerns don’t matter, which could reflect negatively on the company. Take the time to be responsive or have a designated person to handle all matters related to the change up that is the go-to person for employees. Employees will feel like the company is hearing their concerns and doing something about them to make sure that the situation is handled gracefully. As a result, both leadership and employees will benefit.
This can be done at the managerial, directorial, or executive level. Ask your employees to take a survey to see what went well with the organizational shift and what didn’t. Questions can address communication style, information given, and more. The purpose of this exercise is to tap into your employees’ minds to see what responded well with them and what you could improve on in the future. Take note of the responses and use them to better cater internal communications going forward. And this doesn’t just have to apply for organizational announcements you can use the feedback for all types of internal announcements. What’s important is that you are showing your employees that they matter and that you care about what they have to say. Implementing their feedback will show them just that.
An organizational shakeup doesn’t have to be daunting for employees. When organizations take proper measures, it can give everyone peace of mind. Employees can feel their concerns heard and prepare to move forward into the new chapter of the company. Proper personal connection and communication makes this a win-win for everyone.