Upside/Downside

When communicating about a change, discuss the “upside” as well as the “downside.” There is a strong tendency when announcing a change to only discuss the positives. When Winston Churchill became Prime Minister during World War II, his optimism was always tempered with reality.  He often communicated that he and others would have to offer their “blood, toil, tears and sweat” during this time.

So what?

Sharing concerns with employees and coworkers minimizes the “cheerleading” impact and presents a more realistic picture of the change.  Research has revealed that it cultivates a climate of trust and builds confidence in the decision-making process.  People are more willing to sustain the effort when inevitable obstacles surface.  It also demonstrates that the change leaders have devoted time to thoroughly studying the issue.