There is little point in having an agreed vision for change if it is not communicated. Communicating the vision is the fourth step in Kotter's seminal book called Leading Change*. This step builds on the change process so far where a sense of urgency has been established, a guiding coalition formed and the vision created.
Communicating the vision is important as it creates a shared sense of a desired future and motivates and coordinates action towards the change outlined in the vision.
Elements of effective communication
In Leading Change the 7 elements to effectively communicate the vision are:
- Keep communications simple, direct, focused and jargon-free.
- Use metaphors, analogies, and examples to bring the messages to life.
- Deliver the message across lots of different forums and vehicles.
- Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.
- Lead by example. Behaviour is the most powerful way to communicate so walk the talk.
- Address inconsistencies and communicate with honesty and openness.
- Listen and be listened to in a two-way endeavour. Solicit feedback and encourage questions, challenges and arguments about the vision and what it means for your organisation.