Tuesday, December 13, 2011

How to communicate a vision for change

Too often leaders spend some time and effort building a vision for change, but take it no further. Perhaps you get together a team to drive the change; maybe you go off-site with the team and plan the steps necessary ... These things, though good, are absolutely not enough to see the change take root.

What you do with your vision after you create it will determine your success. Your message will have strong competition from all the other things going on so you need to communicate it frequently and embed it within everything that you do.

Find ways to talk about the vision at every opportunity you get. Consciously use it daily to influence the decisions you take and the way you solve problems. Be especially careful to explain that this is what you're doing when working with others. This way they'll catch on and see that the vision for change is not just a bright idea that you'll  move on from when other pressures come along, but something that truly is here to stay.

Most importantly, your actions have to reinforce the need for change and the vision for change. If there's any hint of a gap between what you say and what you do then others will pick up on it and notice the gap in integrity. And they won't follow you.

So
  • Talk as often as possible about the need for change and the vision to achieve it
  • Take as much time as needed to address others' concerns and worries
  • Apply the vision to every aspect of the operation. Tie everything back to the vision
  • Lead by example
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