In response to a simulated business case study and workplace scenario, you will plan and lead a communications project team meeting in which you will present a communication issue, propose solutions and solicit feedback from the team. You will then prepare a written reflection on your leadership of the meeting.
Follow organisational requirements for meeting agendas.
Prepare a written reflection on your leadership of the meeting with the communications project team.
Case study – JKL Industries
JKL Industries is an Australian-owned company, selling forklifts, small trucks and spare parts to industry. They also have a division that leases forklifts and small trucks.
The company’s head office is in Sydney, and JKL has branches in Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Canberra.
Change, communication, and a historical climate of distrust
After 12 years in business, focusing on forklifts and small trucks, JKL Industries has negotiated the sales rights to a range of large and medium-sized trucks from an overseas supplier. This opportunity will provide JKL Industries with an advantage in range over its competitors.
Taking the sales rights opportunity will, however, entail some significant changes, including significant changes to the current organisational structure over the coming twelve months. The company will reposition itself to focus solely on retail sales and service and exit the underperforming rentals market in which forces such as competition and consumer choice reduce potential profitability.
In accordance with the organisation’s values, JKL Industries intends (to the extent feasible) to recruit from within the company and up-skill or re-skill existing employees presently working in rentals who wish to remain with the company.
Given the company’s previous history of employee grievances over pay and conditions and current plans to restructure, JKL Industries has identified poor communications and an organisational climate of conflict as a risk to business goals.
Communication and consultation issues
An internal management review of the organisation late last financial quarter uncovered the following issues:
- lack of an overarching approach to information management that helps to promote common understanding of team goals and organisational values and to build strategic relationships
- slow responses to internal and external customer needs
- slow and ineffective communication of and implementation of ideas for improved processes
- ineffective or no use of modern communication technologies and social platforms
- inadequate consultation, resulting in risks to compliance (particularly WHS consultation requirements) and too little bottom-up information flow from employees to management. The latter results in poor organisational take-up of improvement ideas identified by teams and individuals at lower levels of the organisation and by customer-facing managers and employees.
- inconsistent application by managers of grievance procedures, posing a risk to employee relations
- poor sense of employee engagement, empowerment and accountability for work performance
- distinct lack of trust that management intends to do the right thing by its workers, particularly with respect to organisational transformation and restructure
- poor general awareness of (and therefore poor support of) organisational goals, ethics, values.
Moving forward, to build trust, achieve a positive organisational culture, reduce risk and achieve organisational goals, the organisation is in the process of transforming its approach to communications by:
- developing an effective policy framework for managing internal communications and consultation in accordance with organisational objectives, business ethics, and compliance requirements
- communicating and building support for organisational initiatives and objectives
- managing information flow to:
- provide managers and employees with the information at hand to perform work rsponsibilities
- communicate ideas for improvement (top-down and bottom-up)
- facilitate feedback both to and from employees and management on relevant work performance and outcomes of consultation
- forming a new communications team to plan and implement strategic communications to achieve organisational objectives.
Your role: Project MyJKL
You are the Communications Team Manager of the newly formed Communications Team at JKL Industries. You report to the HR General Manager. The HR General Manager has asked your team to develop a communication package for JKL employees (provisionally entitled MyJKL) outlining the organisation’s restructure plans over the coming year and intention to retrain rentals employees. The communication of this key message is seen by senior management as key to the organisational restructuring plans. The communication will need to:
- gain the attention of employees with the organisation’s message
- underscore management commitment to fairness
- build understanding of the organisation’s plans and employee role within them
- motivate employees to do their part in building a successful JKL brand.
Senior management is firmly behind this project and is ready to provide resources and personnel as needed.
Your proposed communications will need to be in accordance with the new approach to communications, relevant policies and procedures and legislative requirements.