What Role Does Internal Communication Play in Change Management?

Joelly Kahono
Joelly Kahono
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Temps de lecture : 5 minutes

To drive change, you’ll need to lead your organization through several stages. One of those is internal communication.

Most of us have one thing in common: we like surprises! 🎉 However, when it comes to a major transformation in the way we work, that can be a little different… 😅 Nearly 70% of all change management projects fail due to employee resistance. In this case, then, forget keeping secrets. Communicate instead about the changes you wish to make, and explain to your employees why  they’re important.

In this article, we’ll look at the role of internal communication in change management, as well as how to implement change effectively. After reading, you’ll know how to better turn your employees into ambassadors of change! 🤝

The importance of internal communication 

Internal communication is a key element in change management. But why? 🤔

Basically, internal communication should play an essential role at every step of your upcoming change: informing, involving, and mobilizing employees. When neglected, it can lead to confusion, mistrust, and resistance to change on the part of your employees. This can in turn completely compromise their buy-in and commitment to the very change you’re seeking… 

On the flip side, when internal communication is well managed, it offers your organization many advantages! Consider just a few examples:

  • Internal communication allows employees to accept changes more easily. If you clearly explain the reasons for the changes, as well as the benefits for the company and its employees, your employees will feel included and support the changes.
  • Transparent, honest internal communication builds trust between management and employees.
  • Open dialogue pays off! By adopting an approach of open communication in which feedback from stakeholders is welcome, you strengthen employee commitment to the change process.

How should I communicate change internally? 🤔

First, get ready for change

You’ve already defined the change you want to undertake, so hats off! 👏 Before even communicating about this change, though, you’ll need to be well prepared. After all, you have an important role to play! 

According to a Chaire ESSEC/IPSOS survey, 76% of employees “don’t always fully understand the need for change.” This is where internal communication comes into play—to ensure a smooth transition for your teams.

To ensure optimal communication, you’ll want to:

  • Draw up an internal communication plan
  • Involve all stakeholders
  • Create a change management charter to respect
  • Monitor and adapt your communication

Internal communication is the key to informing, involving, and mobilizing your teams around the upcoming change. So, if there’s one thing you mustn’t do, it’s miss this step! 😬

Draw up an internal communication plan

Your communication plan is your guide to ensuring maximum buy-in for the upcoming change. To draft your plan, you’ll need to:

  • Identify your communication objectives and clearly define what you want to achieve.
  • Develop a solid argument to justify your changes through the positive impacts they will have.
  • Segment your audience to tailor your message to the specific needs and concerns of various departments/employees.
  • Choose the appropriate communication channels according to your target and the nature of the message.
  • Establish a communication calendar to plan and coordinate your actions.
  • Clarify the roles and missions of the members of your company who will have to communicate internally on change management.
  • Plan the KPIs that will need monitoring to assess the effectiveness of the communication plan and its impact.

Involve all your stakeholders

Internal communication also means teamwork! According to a Gartner survey, when it comes to managing change, the most successful organizations are those that also rely on their employees—not just their managers. Here are a few best practices for involving all your stakeholders:

  • Assign the role of ambassador to managers and staff who have bought into your project and who can thus act as intermediaries between management and employees.
  • Organize quick routine follow-up meetings with the various teams involved to share progress and collect feedback.
  • Create multidisciplinary workgroups to foster collaboration, mutual support, and collective decision-making.

Talkspirit can help you streamline internal communication around your change management projects. It’s an all-in-one platform that facilitates exchanges, collaboration, and commitment among your teams. Schedule a demo today to discover Talkspirit! 👇

Internal communication is an important part of change management. Here's how to use Talkspirit to properly communicate on change
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Establish one charter for all

To ensure consistent internal communication, you’ll need to draw up a charter specifying the dos and don’ts associated with change management. For example, you could set out: 

  • Rules of use for your internal communication tools. For example, use a specific module to organize and manage meetings. Initiate training sessions with a webinar functionality. Broadcast cold news messages on a news feed and use chat for timely and urgent news that requires an immediate response.
  • Communication adapted for different audiences. To ensure that messages are as clear as possible, avoid “copying and pasting” from an already prepared pitch. Instead, keep the text clear and concise and adapted to each work team. Besides, these days, artificial intelligence can be a valuable asset! 💡 You can quickly tweak messages with the specifics you’ve fed it.
  • Transparency and honesty in communication—even when the news is not positive.
  • Clear deadlines for internal communication on each stage of the change management process.
  • Compliance with confidentiality and data security rules for internal communication.

Monitor and adjust your communication

To guarantee the effectiveness of your internal communication during change management, it’s essential to monitor your actions closely. Make sure you:

  • Collect regular feedback from your employees to assess their understanding and acceptance of the changes.
  • Monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) linked to internal communication. This includes employee engagement and participation rates in change initiatives.
  • Be flexible and ready to adjust your communication strategy depending on employees’ needs and reactions.

If you follow all our advice, you’ll be in business! 👏

A final word

Internal communication has a key role to play in driving change! It’s not just about providing information. Its role is also to reinforce employees’ sense of belonging and commitment in order to limit resistance. Don’t forget: this is the stage in the change management process that should not be overlooked. ⚠️

By integrating these principles and best practices into your change management strategy, you’ll be able to commit your teams to the project and ensure its success! 🚀

Would you like us to support you in your change management project? You’ve come to the right place ;). Contact us to get personalized support 👇

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