Managing Change in a Media Landscape That is Always Changing

Media companies are prime examples of organizations that need to focus on positive change management strategies.

Why? Because they are constantly evolving, more than any other industry. This is in part because of changes to technology that are creating new digital platforms. These platforms are fundamentally changing not only the ways in which we communicate but how we receive news and information. And this, in turn, is changing the business models on which media was originally built.

So the challenge in the media landscape is this: How can they manage this constant evolution effectively?

The first step is to have solid leadership

Without clear and targeted leadership, the rest of the organization cannot hope to manage change effectively. Those leaders need to have extensive experience in the digital landscape to have credibility.

They need to be more than good leaders: they need to be knowledge banks, too — with the ability to communicate the path clearly. Leaders who prefer status quo won’t be effective. Leaders who embrace what’s new — think Elon Musk — will flourish, as will their organizations.

Accepting changes that are untested is difficult for leaders, too, but it starts and ends with them. If they can do it, more of the team will follow.

A culture of change is essential

Most workplace cultures have to establish processes to help people within the organization to accept change. Media companies are almost born to change, out of necessity. But that’s not to say that everyone is always on board.

As with all change management, it starts with the top levels of the organization. Ultimately, however, the branches below have to be on the same page too. Evolution is too fast and changes in technology are too frequent to have naysayers along for the ride. Hiring needs must always consider change and the ability of a candidate to embrace it.

An open culture, where different ideas and out of the box thinking are not only accepted but expected, is ideal. A culture where management trusts in the team they have put together is also ideal. A team that can move fast and be allowed to think on their feet will be more successful than one that cannot improvise. Fast change can meet resistance, so a team that is motivated to accept the challenge is essential.

Talent counts when speed is of the essence

In an environment where change is almost the norm, talent counts. A team with a particular ability for morphing their skills to meet demands will be a positive influence. Those teams need to be highlighted as the standard. Other teams need to see what they are meant to be achieving themselves.

It’s not about fostering competition so much as setting a positive example. Fast changes in technology and business models means a lot of upheaval. Having a successful team that can share their abilities for others to copy creates more success all around.

The speed of change in media is much faster than with other industries but it’s a question of starting out on the right foot. If the organization is built for change, it will withstand and even embrace it. If not, it will fail. This begins and ends with the leadership of the organization. If they are ready for change, they can create the vision to bring their teams with them.

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