I am an inspirational speaker for a financial services organization where the delegates of this organization are going through a lot of change. No kidding! No surprise there.
Like many of their counterparts, they recently went through a round of significant downsizing. I am to be an inspirational speaker for the financial services professionals who survived the masacre.
These are my thoughts on creating a motivational speech to rebuild trust and confidence for a company that survived restructuring.
It could be a tough crowd.
Those surviving downsizing may take on a guarded disposition. After all, they were spared -for now - but any 'happily ever after' thoughts are shot. Those left behind may be reluctant to share information or sacrifice for the organization. The reverse may also be true, although more unlikely; they may feel so lucky just to have a job that they will give everything to it. The survivors will also likely have double the workload and fewer resources to draw on. This mentality and broken trust can permeate a workplace and suck morale dry. Now, how do you motivate this crowd?
First of all, it is important to address the obvious. This situation is hard on everyone. There is a mourning and a loss that goes on when organizations go through this much change so quickly. Morale will be at an all time low. A motivational speech will not fix this, but it is a good start.
Leadership needs to address a new vision in leaner times for the organization. Employees need to know that the restructuring was necessary, not an arbitrary move but intentional and critical for survival.
Next, people need to feel some kind of hope and direction for the future. Leadership will fall out of favor is they are perceived as uncommitted to the change taking place or directionless about the future. Anger and animosity will build with lackluster leadership as people will feel disillusioned about the past and future. If people are to give their heart and soul to their work they need to feel the organization is just as committed as they are.
A motivational speech to ease the pain of downsizing will need to be upbeat and hopeful but will need to address specific challenges the organization is facing. New direction needs to be set and the vision should be clear and compelling.
A clear plan for the future isnecessary to rebuild trust. The more transparent leadership is about downsizing, the more trust they will build in the process. A motivational speech designed to help rebuild confidence and trust must be perceived as genuine and honest to help rebuild loyalty.
Get straight to the point: you want continued loyalty and hard work from employees even though you have terminated the employment of some of their colleagues. This is a tall order. Express gratitude for service and regret for downsizing and a clear plan for the future.
The main goal of the motivational speech after downsizing is to inspire hope.