If you are preparing to alter processes within your field service business, a change management plan supported by clear communication is vital.
Whether you are implementing a major process overhaul or making a minor adjustment to a workflow, clear communication can mean the difference between a successful or unsuccessful project. Proper messaging to convey information will help your business set the stage for upcoming changes. It will also ease confusion and ensure your team is on the same page with your vision.
Here are five tips to keep in mind when communicating change in your business:
1. Determine who will be affected
Before putting new processes in place, establish who will be affected by the changes. Are there one or two key players who will need to make adjustments, or will entire departments be affected?
The better understanding you have of who will be impacted by upcoming changes, the better you will be able to plan how to communicate. Further, knowing who will be affected by new processes will ensure you include the right people in your planning.
2. Be upfront and clear
Don’t beat around the bush or hide behind vague language when announcing process changes. It is just as important to share the negative aspects (or rather those pieces that may bring up more resistance) of the new changes, as it is to share the positive. You have a better chance of gaining your team’s trust if you are upfront and clear about what is coming. This will also help set expectations so that there is less confusion down the road.
Bonus tip: Provide clarity around the changes throughout the process, not just at the beginning, so that everyone involved can see where the changes are proving successful and where adjustments need to be made.
3. Create a messaging strategy
Do you have staff who respond better to emails than phone calls or prefer visual diagrams to written explanations? Make sure you have multiple ways to explain and demonstrate the coming changes based on how your staff best receives information.
You also want to ensure your staff know exactly who to go to with their questions. As you strategize how you will share information, include a plan to streamline the flow of information through your business.
4. Promote the benefits
As you share details about changing processes, take time to map out the benefits of the change for everyone involved. How will these new processes make life easier for your staff? If you are switching to a new software platform that will eliminate manual inventory counts, share with your staff that they will no longer need to spend hours of their week sifting through inventory. Knowledge of a reward generally provides the motivation needed to work through a difficult process.
5. Encourage staff to share concerns
Create an environment where your staff feel comfortable sharing their concerns. Open communication will help staff feel better supported and is likely to increase their adoption of the new processes. You can create this type of environment by:
- Setting aside time in meetings for question and answer sessions
- Creating a system for staff to submit complaints and giving those complaints serious consideration
- Being aware of, and halting, any “us versus them” talk
- Promptly responding to feedback to show that you find your staff’s concerns to be important
Good communication is just one piece of effectively managing change within a field service business. Want to learn more about change management strategy? Download our eBook!
Looking for other tips to better manage your field service business? Explore our blog for more insights!