How can the HR team improve the communication plan?

The Big Old Company is a global retailer with its headquarters in Chicago and subsidiaries in 50 different countries. Recently, top management officials at the Big Old Company reached the decision that the firm would benefit from the implementation of a performance management system. To implement the new system, a new strategic HR team has been assembled. Because each of the team members has some prior experience working in a performance management culture, the team knew better than to begin the performance management process before executing a well-designed communication plan.

However, none of the team members have experience in designing or implementing a new performance management system from scratch. Moreover, the team members are also simultaneously involved in other team projects. Not surprisingly, they are quite short on time and thus feel the need to design and carry out the communication plan as soon as possible. As a result, the team has come up with the following communication plan that has been sent to the CEO of the company for final approval before its execution.

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“Our communication of the new performance management system will take the format of a lecture/presentation that will be part of the upcoming in-house general management training session for the company’s executives. During the presentation, we will first define the concept of a performance management system. We will then delve deeper into the details of the system by explaining the steps and number of meetings involved. Finally, we will conclude our presentation with a Q & A session.”

After reading the above description of the communication plan, the CEO explained that he did not think that the communication plan would be very effective in promoting user acceptance and satisfaction. Subsequently, the CEO offered two recommendations to improve the communication plan. First, he suggested that the strategic HR team expand and redesign the presentation. Second, he emphasized that there was no evidence of how the HR team would execute the communication plan before and after the planned presentation. Given these two statements, how can the HR team improve the communication plan?

Of note, there is no single answer. Students are encouraged to discuss their thoughts and provide thoughtful engagement to the responses of their peers. The students are encouraged to make reference to the answers a good communication plan should embody or answer as discussed in the course text.

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