Digital change affects all employees, regardless of hierarchical level or prior knowledge. This means that for a successful change, all employees must be reached. All of them. How is that possible? Of course, through communication. Do you already inform your employees in e-mails and newsletters? Or on your intranet? That’s great!
But is that enough? Unfortunately no, not at all.
You will achieve real success if you enable interaction. Your colleagues don’t just want to be bombarded with information and well-intentioned tips. They want to ask something, vent their frustrations, or get individual help when they get stuck and despair over a problem. They need human interaction. We humans are pack animals and team players, so let’s work as a team.
Short official channels
Maybe you already use multipliers? Or key users or power users? No matter what name you give them, multipliers have a direct line to employees. They can be addressed directly and deal with individual problems. They can name helpful sources or find the right contacts. They are someone at eye level, someone who is known, someone from us. Employees are much less reluctant to ask multipliers for help than they are to tap other resources. Multipliers may also be able to conduct workshops themselves or be specifically responsible for managers, depending on their level of training. And even if multipliers do little or none of this, they are one thing: role models. They live change. Genuine role modeling reaches the most people. Properly placed questions, hints and tips on new tools, new ways of working, etc. from multipliers, for example in meetings, make the topic constantly present and open the minds of colleagues. Multipliers stay tuned and are approachable, and that is exactly what you need for your successful digital change.
One for all. All for one.
Multipliers are also the mouthpiece of the project team. They receive direct feedback from employees and can pass this on to the project team. As a result, measures are not based so much on assumptions, but more and more on facts, the longer the use of the multipliers and the change in the company continues. Be sure to take this feedback into account, because it gives employees the feeling that they are being heard. This increases engagement, reduces frustration and strengthens the connection to the company. All points that are becoming increasingly important, especially in these times.
How do you become a multiplier?
So how do employees become multipliers? In most cases, these people are needed as part of a change project. It makes sense to involve them directly in such a project and let them participate. Perhaps multipliers can also be found in the project team itself. For other interested persons, a short onboarding is usually a good idea, in which the new mindset as well as the change itself and its added value are communicated. If multipliers can then exchange information and help each other or work together, and if the project team keeps this group of multipliers up to date and answers their questions, onboarding has been successful.
If you can somehow manage it, keep your multipliers active. And do so beyond the duration of the project. The world is constantly changing. Digitization is taking on forms that we could hardly have imagined two years ago. What will it look like in four years? Change will always be present in the company. Multipliers are your secret tools. They know the employees, know sensitivities, know the actual processes and problems – ask them.
Multipliers always stand out who have a great interest in digital and continue to educate themselves. These people become drivers of innovation and motivation in the company and are therefore particularly valuable. These people should definitely be valued.
For example, provide multipliers with new information at an early stage, involve them in opinion forming, create batches or T-shirts, postcards or videos about the individual personalities and their experiences. Conducts Q&A calls and events and workshops specifically for multipliers. Implement multiplier training as a permanent professional development component in your HR department. It may become an advantage for your own career to be a multiplier. Have them appear at events and in webinars. Give them visibility at higher levels of the hierarchy. Listen carefully to what your multipliers have to say.
But above all, give them enough time to do justice to their role so that instead of frustration, more and more joy arises from the new and grows steadily. Only in this way can their joy be passed on authentically and gradually reach all employees so that the digital transformation is anchored comprehensively and sustainably.