Leaders have to have a WHY before a WHAT

The last three weeks I have observed critical communication errors a talented leader made in a large organization. This individual has been thrust into a situation where changes need to occur for his division to grow and become legally compliant. The problem is his division’s communication method for the change is Nike-“Just Do it”.

His communication method or lack of one has caused daily drama and distractions because no one in the organization being affected by the changes understands his intent. The only thing people are observing is his behavior which includes changing benefits the employees used to have. He is being perceived as non-caring and aloof. Those two qualities usually are not found in leadership best practices to possess.

My analogy is he is being relegated to weed eating a runaway and he has been hired to fly jets. He is spending all his time dealing with people who are complaining to his supervisor about the changes. When people understand WHY the change is happening they are not so upset with WHAT is changing. He has learned a valuable lesson-communicating the WHY before the WHAT is the only way to START real change.

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