For CEOs, an employee road show means making the rounds to establish a personal connection with your workforce. Your employees are your company’s lifeblood. So it’s essential to show your appreciation and build valuable goodwill. Many times, CEOs do road shows when they join a company. Other opportunities for CEOs to get out and meet employees include a new product launch, announcement of breaking news, or other landmark event that’s putting the company in the headlines. No matter what the occasion, here are some keys to making your road trip a success:
- Take time to prepare for the event. If there’s one way to show disrespect for your employees, it’s winging it during the road show. Just like any meeting you’ll take on as CEO, you must properly prepare in order to make a good impression. Determine what you’ll say and the format for the event, such as making an announcement and then allowing time for Q&A. Rehearse your presentation until you get it just right.
- Focus on your core message. There’s a reason you’re conducting the road show, and it needs to be front and center in your presentation to employees – especially if a change is going to affect them. Identify the message you want to convey and develop a compelling story around it. You might consider using visuals to demonstrate your point, but don’t bury your head in a slide presentation.
- Pace yourself in scheduling the employee road show. If you squeeze in too many meetings with employees face to face, you’ll be giving each of them short shrift – exactly what you want to avoid by doing a road show. The purpose of the event is to get to know your employees on a personal level; getting to know many of them on a shallow level doesn’t work to meet this objective. Be realistic in what you can accomplish at each stop and schedule accordingly.
- Make the experience interactive. For many employees, your road show is one of the few times they’ll encounter you face-to-face. It’s critical to make your presentation memorable by including them in the experience. Go beyond the typical Q&A and do some role playing or put on a skit. Take advantage of Twitter wall technology to get real-time feedback on what employees want to hear from you.
- Take advantage of multiple opportunities during the road show. Use your time on the road wisely and multipurpose at different stop. It’s smart to schedule other local commitments such as news media opportunities or pay a visit to local attractions.
What are some other keys to making a CEO employee road trip a success? Please share your insights in the comments below!
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