IT group runs staff workshops to spread e-business message

IT services firm ICL is embarking on a major staff communication project
ahead of its flotation on the Stock Exchange later this year.

The company wants its 22,000 employees to understand its change of focus
from products to e-business and for them to feel involved with the
transformation so they stay onboard.

Over 12 weeks the entire workforce, which is spread across 40 countries,
will be taking part in a one-day session.

Each session will be attended by around 24 people, split into tables of
three or four. They will learn about the company’s history, the changes about
to take place and the thinking behind them and be able to discuss the implications.

Ideas and objections will be fed back to the executive management committee.
Their responses will be circulated on the company’s intranet.

"If we relied on the traditional management cascade, where information
is gradually filtered down from the top, it would probably take two years to
get this message across," said Elizabeth Lank, programme director of
mobilising knowledge at ICL.

"This has the advantage of speed and making sure we fully engage
people. People are more motivated if they understand why they are being asked
to do something," Lank explained.

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