The travel industry is facing a major paradigm shift at a rapid rate. Communicating travel policy across the board is a daunting task in itself, particularly when the workforce is diverse–from Baby Boomers to Generation Y. The issues too can be diverse from policy adherence, communication, support, unused ticket, policy adoption to acceptance level. One of our blogs had earlier discussed a thing or two on ‘there is one for everyone’ when it comes to developing travel policy.
So whether your employee belongs to Baby Boomer, Generation X or Generation Y, how he or she responds to change can be different. It all boils down to how you effectively communicate the intended changes with your audience and the benefits that accompany it to avoid potential conflicts and communication pitfalls. Here is how you can communicate travel policy changes with diverse generation mix:
More of senior managers and executives, Baby Boomers know A to Z of their industry. They prefer face-to-face, direct and open interaction. While at the same time they are becoming increasingly social, and using more of electronic media for interaction.
Gen X paints the middle rung of the company ladder. They are responsive to changes and tend to be autonomous and flexible. Their preferred mode of communication is email and sharing quick short, direct messages. Travel managers have to be snappy and more responsive while communicating changes to this group.
Gen Y occupy the first line of management. Connectivity is their forte as they dabble with email, Internet and text messages day in and out. Like Gen X, they prefer communication to be accurate, specific, instantaneous and specific.
Travel management is an evolving area and managers have to live up to the expectations of the workforce at times in implementing business travel policy changes. Being proactive rather than reactive is the key to communicating changes in the travel policy. Figuring out an employee’s communication style and what works and what doesn’t for him/her is the first step—direct messages, telecommunication, emails or face-to-face meetings. Finally, make employees understand the benefit part to gain acceptance and implement the new travel policy changes quickly across the organization.