Today’s world is moving at an ever-increasing pace. New technologies, opportunities and threats are putting organisations under pressure to keep up and have the ability to change rapidly in order to maintain a competitive advantage and survive in increasingly harder business climates.
Social media can keep us connected 24/7, but does it have a place in the professional world? And can it help us to improve our change management efforts?
It has the potential to become an important vehicle in facilitating better and faster change management. According to Prosci's Best Practices in change management research 38% of organisations are using social media as a part of their change management initiatives. They are using social media to get messages out, engage the organisation more comprehensively as well as for informal feedback and better tracking of change adoption and usage.
Research has shown that social media has an increasingly powerful role to play; so let's look and see where we can use it to add value to our change management projects.
Widen the reach of two-way communications
The most commonly cited reason for the use of social networking applications in change management is to communicate messages to a broader audience; faster and more efficiently. Adopting social technology in your organisation can prevent communication only coming from the top-down and instead, ensure it is flowing in a number of directions to create a collaborative environment.
Engage the organisation
Employee engagement has been a top contributor to a successful change management initiative for 20 years. You can leverage social networking tools to create a more inclusive and supportive work environment and encourage engagement through a more open dialogue within the organisation. Additionally, this modern mode of communication can be used to engage all generations - almost everyone is on at least one social platform these days.
Social media can act as a safe place for employees to provide informal feedback to top-level employees - without a looming threat of repercussions - as well as providing an insight into staff perceptions regarding the change. Social media is gives a sense of community as it enables its users to discuss, collaborate, and create shared experiences.
The uses and benefits of social media are vast and varied so it's important that you do some internal assessment before a mass implementation. Here are a few things you should consider beforehand:
- Is social media an appropriate culture fit for your company and the audience you are trying to reach?
- Do you have someone who can be solely responsible for monitoring and responding to postings, email or other forms of communication?
- What is the purpose of social media within your organisation & will it help you achieve what you have set out to?
Want to learn more?
The tenth addition of Prosci’s Best Practices in Change Management compiles 20 years of industry leading research from change managers, project leaders and executives from across the world into the largest body of change management research to date. With insights on topics such as sponsorship, managing resistance, change saturation and employee engagement, this report can help you better manage the people side of change in your projects and your organisation.