Departmental Communications Rollout

Communications Protocol for Senior Leaders

Supervisors will be responsible for communicating with Defence Team members on the next steps for business resumption and re-integration. Chain of Command will be the most effective form of communication during this process. When (if) possible, communicate to team members at the same time using established communications material.  

Senior leaders will be expected to engage with unions and develop group and unit-specific messaging to ensure return-to-work plans are understood at all levels by their staff. To assist leadership in internal communications, a template email to staff and speaking points are annexed for your use in tailoring messaging to your individual situations.

It will be equally important that all staff receive the same information within the established timeframe to reduce anxiety, rumours and inaccurate information. It is important that everyone understands the decisions that are made, the rationale behind them, the implementation plan and their impacts.  Communicating clearly, honestly and frequently will be key to a smooth transition.

Throughout this process, communicate the facts honestly and with compassion. Listening to staff’s concerns, situations and questions will be equally important.  If you don’t know the answer to their questions, commit to finding out and getting back to them.  In many cases, staff will simply need to express their opinions and thoughts. 

At a minimum, messages being sent to your teams should also be shared 24 hours in advance with your local union representative to make sure they are aware and able to assist in answering questions from their members/our staff.

Notification to staff – General Information

Staff, whether returning to the workplace or continuing to work remotely, will be advised of their situation through a meeting with you as their supervisor, which should then be followed by a written confirmation of next steps.

Management support to staff

As a manager or senior leader, and therefore a trusted source of information, staff are urged to come to you for advice and guidance. Given the case-by-case basis in which this process will be implemented, communications received through Chain of Command will be very important. Remember to reiterate this to staff with one-on-one meetings. Additionally, when you yourself may be in doubt or in need of further guidance/information, consult with your own Supervisor/Chain of Command, or Public Affairs/communication teams for advice.

Please leverage the included resources to support you with having conversations and managing transitions in times of change.

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