inspiring business change communications

Choosing communications for business change Part 1 of 3

Share Button

In part one of this three part blog series on communications channels for communicating change – innovative channels and creative comms.

Wanting to inspire people with change? Use drawings!

I’m talking about the support of a professional visual scribe or illustrator here so no need to break out the Crayola after all these years. A visual scribe can help you unlock the richest portrayal of how and why things are changing, what people are thinking even.

Illustrations, and/or rich pictures, are a creative way to tell a story and capture people’s input.

Where it works well

At Afiniti, we’ve seen a client in the transport industry go through huge technology and process change; a complete overhaul which meant the way people worked would change forever.

How can you bring change like this to life?

Together we created illustrations which were an integral part of the branding for the programme.

But they didn’t ignore the history of the company and its heritage. Far from it, they told the story of the organisation and the changes it had been through, creating a sense of an ongoing journey.

This included an animation in which momentum was created and the story of the history and of the future was told. You could see the pride people had in being part of this story.

If illustrations and materials are static, some of the power is lost. People need to be totally involved in business change otherwise they’ll see it as something that is being done to them: cue resistance.

Putting a large template rich picture at local offices means people can edit and co create their own change by adding their thoughts and promises to it.

Supporting culture change

This editable template supports cultural change particularly well as people can contribute their own commitments to operating in a certain way. Setting their own goals in this way inspires a different level of ownership over behaviours and change.

A big gap between your big strategy and execution? Try scribing

A scribe can add enormous value to a workshop. Imagine senior management or leadership working together to sense check the strategy laid out in principle by the board. At some point these plans will have to be solidly executed. Managers and leadership must make sense of how the business will look in the future and how the strategy will translate to implementation.

What emerges is a picture of the current state and challenges – the strategy mapped out and the routes to success.

The strategy becomes clearer in the minds of managers and they have co-created an approach to take it forward through working with the facilitator and the scribe.

When you work in business change you know that if people purposefully contribute to the change it has a much better chance of being sustained. The more you involve people with change, in its design and implementation, the more they will be able to actively and positively take your business forward into the future.

Having everything on one page obviously can’t include all the nuts and bolts but it will remind everyone immediately of the key rationale for change – the why, and the how.

With illustrations, rich pictures, animation and real time scribing, you can bring your change story to life and meaningfully involve people – all essential stuff when you consider the maelstrom of working life and the attention a programme really needs to make a difference.

In part 2 will look at how to choose your comms channels strategically for your programme.