Any time a new leader joins, there are a plethora of loose ends to tie up well before the new hire begins his or her first day on the job; one of which is letting the rest of your team in on the good news! Here are three non-run-of-the-mill ways to announce a new leader while getting your team excited about the news and the changes sure to follow.
Embrace the Virtues of Video
An introductory video is unexpected – think of it as a virtual meet and greet in which you announce and introduce a new leader joining your company.
The beauty of all things virtual, is that you can:
- Record your initial announcement: “We’re excited to announce…”
- Request the new leader also record a short video clip of themselves (remotely, if they’re not in-house yet) – saying hello and sharing their top-of-mind goals.
- Edit the two clips together.
Voila! You’ve prepped an informative video announcement that’s way more engaging than a regular memo.
When requesting your new leader record a quick video clip of themselves, send them a short list of best practices, but encourage them to talk freely. You want your employees to get a true taste of who this person is – not a canned video reading a script of the mission statement verbatim from the company website. We recommend suggesting a timeframe of one or two minutes for this piece.
Next, think about how to best share the video – you could attach it to an email and send it out to colleagues, or you could post it to a shared intranet and verbally let your team know there’s an announcement for them to check out. Getting creative with the video announcement builds excitement for the new leader and for all other team members.
Meeting via Meeting
Already have an existing team meeting on the books? Build the new leader announcement into your agenda. Oftentimes, meetings can be a bit on the dry and anticlimactic side; full of analytics, reports, and figures. Shake up your normal meeting cadence by making it a surprising and intentional discussion point in your meeting, rather than an afterthought tacked on to the last few minutes. You want the announcement to be front and center – the star of the meeting.
When announcing the new leader in a meeting, be prepared to let your colleagues in on:
- The new leader’s name and title, and what their new role will entail
- The start date
- Any shifting teams that colleagues should be aware of. Note: if changes involve anyone present in the meeting, share this one-on-one with affected colleagues or in a small meeting for the impacted team prior to a large group meeting, if possible.
- A fun and personal piece about who the person is or what made them a great fit for the role
If possible, see if your new leader can make an appearance in the meeting to introduce themselves to your team, even if they haven’t yet officially come on board. A brief in-person introduction is more personable and your team will enjoy the opportunity to shake hands and put a face to their name.
Ask the leader to share his or her story with the team. How did they get to where they are today? Why did they go that route? People connect with a story that is emotional and relatable instead of rattling off points from a resume.
For example, instead of saying, “Hi, I’m Traci and I’m excited to join as the new chief consulting officer,” think about telling the team something more: “Hi, I’m Traci. I’m a former journalist who, when faced with a family emergency, decided I needed to make a change to better balance work and life. After picking up a few freelance gigs, I realized that journalism principles could be applied to marketing and communications and it could really make a big difference for a company who put an intensified focus on their audience, whether a customer or prospect. I also realized becoming a communications consultant allowed me to continue to do what I love most; ask questions, continuously learn, and share others’ stories.”
Host a Leader Luncheon
If you’ve already announced that a new leader is joining your team and you’re looking for a way to introduce them to your team or other leaders, plan a team lunch! Whether catered in-house, or offsite at a fun restaurant, creating an experience for your team to interact with your new leader will put everyone at ease and will allow for a more casual, no-pressure discussion.
Jumping into a new role is always overwhelming for the first month or so. If you’re planning a lunch, get it on the calendar within the first week or two of the new leader’s start date. It’ll be a welcome break from learning all of the processes and ins and outs of the business.
No request is too big or small. Whether you’d like help implementing the above deliverables or are looking to build an entire internal communications strategy. Get in touch!