Don’t Leave Employees In the Dark
For companies with more than 20 employees, things can get pretty busy as these companies most likely have a few teams that run the show. If managed incorrectly, certain employees could start feeling a little bit left out. HR management consultant Susan M Heathfield explains that employees need to feel connected and that they are part of an effort that is larger than just their job. They need to feel as if they matter in the larger picture of the organisation. The overall goal is to not leave employees in the dark.
While some individuals are not always kept up to date regarding changes that other teams may automatically know, employees may start to feel disconnected from the company and their teams. East Coast Risk Management sets out a few important factors to keep in mind to avoid this pitfall.
People have very powerful imaginations. If you don’t keep them informed they will fill in the blanks with all kinds of scary scenarios. Let your people know what to expect, when to expect it and why it’s happening. If they understand the business reasons for the impending changes, they will be much more likely to accept them. Especially if you can communicate how the changes will benefit the employees.
Keep your communications simple and honest. Don’t try to hide behind slick euphemisms. Everyone knows that when a realtor describes a home as “quaint” they really mean “old”. And “cosy” is code for “really small”. Just the same, employees aren’t fooled by “code words”. It is much better to simply withhold sensitive information than to lie or mislead.
Just because employees understand the reasons for the change doesn’t mean they are ready for it. They may be anxious about the future of their job (despite reassurances), sad for the loss of their status quo, or just feeling uneasy in general. They need to know that you have heard their concerns (that means you need to LISTEN) and that you understand!
This is not the time for you to hide behind closed doors. Even if your team works remotely, you have to try and set a recurring “open door” appointment on your calendar. It will communicate your willingness to hear concerns and your honest desire to get their feedback. Employees would appreciate the opportunity to be heard. You may find the feedback from “the trenches” invaluable to improving new processes.