Improving Communication helps Manage Change

Change is the one thing that has the greatest impact on our lives and careers and there is no doubt that communication is key to managing it. But how well do Organisations perform in this area?

change management - communication tips
How to manage change through better communication
When we lose the security of routine and the known boundaries in which we operate, change affects us on a fundamental level:
  • It weakens our self-confidence
  • It challenges our productivity at work
  • It creates baseless fears and concerns
  • It causes stress between individuals and teams
  • It makes acquiring new knowledge and learning new systems daunting.

Are there factors that can help guide us through the process of change? Is there a plan or blueprint that we can use to better support and implement change?

There is a clear 4-stage process to help you become more self-aware, and therefore navigate change more successfully:


  1. The initial shock. You are moving through the day and hear rumours of changes about to be implemented. Nothing has been confirmed and then suddenly it is announced, and changes will being implemented with immediate effect. At this stage we often experience shock, confusion, worry and concern. Questions are raised about your position, the impact on the business and as a result, the new knowledge that you may be challenged to learn.
  2. Defensive mode begins. The initial shock has weakened, and the news sinks in. You don’t know why it happened and you question the logic of it. The more you pull the decision apart the angrier you get. It doesn’t make sense and is when your defensive retaliation is at its highest. You band together with colleagues who agree with your position. All you can see are the difficulties.
  3. Just feels wrong. The ‘uncomfortable’ stage begins. You are unhappy and feel awkward and unsure what to do, or where the company is heading. You start to see the advantages yet remain unconvinced. Others are quick to point out faults in the logic and colleagues are often at their lowest point.
  4. Time passes and things begin to make sense. You see why change was implemented, and the advantages. The progress forward seems heavy and slow yet there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Could this have been easier? What was missing?


In each of these stages the key was the lack of communication.

  • A meeting of all those potentially affected could be held to present the change, the impact and the benefits. Reassurances should be given at this point, because it positively impacts confidence.
  • Team sessions should be organised to discuss issues, address individual concerns and  come up with possible solutions.
  • Implement 1-2-1 goal setting, action plans and define clear objectives, which results in a sense of control returning.


Change is inevitable and offers the greatest opportunity for growth, or the seeds of destruction. How it’s handled strongly dictates which outcome will prevail.