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on February 13, 2020 Internal Communications

Best Practices for Communicating About Changes In the Executive Team

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In today’s workforce, it seems like the number of executives is on the rise, leading more and more employees to leave their positions. In fact, the number of CEO changes that occurred in the third quarter of 2019 is more than a 20 percent increase from those that occurred in the same period five years earlier. 

A recent high-profile example of this is the removal of WeWork CEO Adam Neumann. Such a major change in the company's operations had a big impact on the employees themselves, for better or worse. From one perspective, the lack of problematic leadership was positive for the company and many employees. Alternatively, more than 2,400 employees had to be cut from WeWork, a negative consequence for many. 

Overall, it is clear that executive changes have a huge impact on employees. Thus, it is vital that major changes be communicated to the employees effectively and timely. Here are some best practices for creating internal communications about changes in the executive team. 

Communicate Fast and Often

When executive changes arise, it is important to be transparent and keep your employees in the loop. When kept in the dark, employees will likely speculate on rumors and assumptions rather than the actual facts, which are often much worse. 

Additionally, the longer that you wait to communicate the information to your team, the higher the chance that employees will find out through a different source. Therefore, as soon as the decision is made to change up the members of upper management, you should begin to plan how the official update will be communicated.

Finally, after an official update on changes is communicated, several follow-up communications should be sent to employees. This will help to make the employees feel like they are being thought of and valued in this transition period. 

Make It Easy for Employees to Ask Questions

With any leadership change, questions are likely to arise. Therefore, it is in your best interest to develop a way for employees to efficiently communicate their inquiries and receive answers as soon as possible. This will also help to ensure they feel valued during the transition process. 

One of the best strategies for opening up a channel of dialogue with employees is using a company-wide employee app. This will allow you to create a more thought-out and official response to their questions compared to other methods of communication like in-person meetings. 

Address How It Affects the Employees

After employees learn about a change in the executive team, they will likely want to know how the change will directly affect them and their position. It is best to get ahead of this question by addressing it directly within the initial piece of communication. If done properly, the employees should never be left feeling uncertain about their future at the company after they finish reading the internal communication.

If your internal communications follow these protocols, then it should help to make the executive team change go much smoother. To help improve other forms of internal communications, contact us today. 

Sydnie Kerr

Customer Content Manager

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