Change Management & Communication - The Elevator Speech

Why Change ?

The fundamental question that always needs a clear and concise answer is, "Why do we need to change ?". That need should be communicated in a clear and concise way so that everyone throughout the organisation can be on the same page. A relatively easy way of doing this is to develop an Elevator Speech.

The Elevator Speech

The whole purpose of an Elevator Speech is to clearly articulate the why, what and how aspects of any change that you plan to implement. As the name suggests, an Elevator Speech should last about as long as the average elevator trip. Each aspect should be covered concisely and be pitched at a level that everyone can understand:

  • Why - this is why you are doing the change in the first place. The reasons described need to be compelling to everyone impacted and should aim to create a sense of urgency around the change.
  • How - this is a high level view of what people can expect to see happen. Whilst there is no detail it will help start to prepare people for what will happen.
  • When - this will give the people involved and impacted by the change a rough idea of the timescales involved, preparing them for when it is going to happen.

The Elevator Speech is not the only thing that you will communicate during your change but it is the foundation that gives everyone a clear and concise view that answers the question "Why Change?". As such, it should be an essential first step in any change management plan.

© 2010 Steveyo

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