- to make the form, nature, or future course of something different from what it is or from what it wold be if left alone.
- to transform or convert.
- an authorized messenger or representative.
- a diplomatic official of the highest rank.
Change Ambassador (definition)
An authorized messenger sent by leadership to speak with the organization’s entire team for the purpose of charting a future course and moving the whole group quickly from A to B.
The messenger takes your vision of the future and articulates it to every person in the organization. The messenger becomes your spokesperson. The messenger speaks for you. The messenger listens for you.
Qualities of an effective Change Ambassador
Understands the big picture
Honest and trustworthy
Ability to listen
Determination and single-mindedness
Ability to stay on message
Friendly and approachable
100% loyal to new vision
Generally speaking, people don’t like change.
People tend to like things the way they are. It’s comfortable. It’s easy. It’s like a pair of shoes that’s broken in and fit perfectly. The problem is that old pair of shoes eventually gets worn out and needs to be replaced. Facing that fact isn’t always easy. Someone – maybe your spouse – has to say, “Go get a new pair of shoes!”
People are more likely to accept change when they are lead.
The leader of a business is ultimately responsible for leading change. Change is the boss’ job. The CEO. The owner. The general manager. If you are in charge, then it’s your job to lead change.
The challenge is you’re busy. You have lots of things to do besides talking individually with everyone in your organization. People don’t want to accept change unless they feel connected. Understood. Heard.
People need to understand where they’re supposed to go.
People need a clearly articulated vision of their new future. They need time to absorb that vision. Ask questions. Mumble and grumble a little. Be heard.
Are you a tad on the impatient side? Especially after it’s crystal clear to you. Of course you’ve been planning the change for months so you’ve had plenty of time to absorb, get used to the new vision, understand. Is listening patiently after you’ve made a decision one of your strengths?
As the boss, you may not have time to talk individually with every group and every valued employee. And yet, they need to spoken to. Listened to. Encouraged. Prompted. Chided. What can you do?
You could delegate the task of explaining, listening, and encouraging to one or more of your senior staff. Of course, they are also busy. I’m guessing you’ve assigned other projects to them that you’re expecting soon. Right now. Yesterday.
Or … you could just send out a memo. How has that worked in the past, Captain Bligh?
Here is the reality.
You are going to do all of the above.
You are going to put the new vision in writing. You are going to get your senior managers to all sign up. You are going to address the employees as a large group. And you will speak with many of them individually. After that … you’ll hope and pray.
Another option does exist. You could enlist the service of a communication specialist on a temporary basis. You could ask this specialist to carry your message to the entire team.
You could hire a messenger … or the Change Ambassador
The Change Ambassador takes your vision of the future and articulates it to every person in the organization. The Change Ambassador becomes your spokesperson. The Change Ambassador speaks for you. The Change Ambassador listens for you.