When it comes to communicating job loss, employees want their leaders to be straight forward about what’s happening and why. Navigating difficult change communications isn’t easy, but employees want to hear the truth, especially about the bad news. Here are Tribe’s recommended best practices to help craft a communications strategy around being as open and respectfully as possible.
Communicate early and often
In Tribe’s national research with employees on change management communications, respondents stressed how important it was for them to have some advance notice of bad news. Communicating job loss is especially important in this sense. For some, this was so that they could prepare logistically; for others emotionally.
Provide a go-to communications resource
The rumor mill will be running overtime while communicating job loss, so counteract that with a page on your intranet or a microsite devoted to keeping employees in the loop. This is a good place to share the business reasons behind the organizational change along with timely updates as the process unfolds.
Establish two-way communications
Offer at least one channel for employees to share questions and concerns, and put a process in place to respond in a timely manner. When possible, Tribe recommends a page where employees can post questions – anonymously or not – and read management’s responses. Another simple two-way solution in communicating job loss is to put out a simple survey that allows employees to give feedback. Read more about Tribe’s recommendations on two-way communications here.
Communicate with those who are staying
While communicating job loss, employees not affected will be watching closely to see how the company treats those who will be leaving. They’ll also be listening for what they can expect in the company’s future. Engage them in the positive outcomes of the change and the opportunities it may create in their own futures. If handled well, the change can build employee alignment with the overall vision of the company.
Need assistance communicating job loss? Tribe can help.