Video: a key Business Change Tool

Posted by Leadent Solutions on October 10, 2013

Let’s face it, document and information management (or in fact most IT-related transformations) can be a bit of a dry subject, even if it is essential to improving the way you work as a business. So before you’ve even begun your Business Change engagement activities you’re probably already thinking about how to ‘jazz it up’ a bit. This is where a relatively small investment in the production of a video can be very valuable.

With the advent of YouTube, TED, Prezis, Powtoons and other animated, motion or video based presentation media; the ways in which you can help people to absorb the key messages is now more varied, engaging and hopefully more effective. Gone are the days of an ‘office memo’, a few sporadic posters and some lunchtime meetings. A Business Change project should seriously consider
how video could be used as a high impact, low cost component of your Business Change toolkit.

I’m not advocating that video is to be used as the exclusive method of disseminating key messages, but it can complement other (perhaps more traditional) approaches and can certainly help to deliver the messages more consistently.

So you want to create a video to get your messages out there, what should you consider?

  • It may seem obvious, but it’s worthwhile to consider the exact purpose of the video. Think about what you want the audience to get out of watching it; this will influence the style, duration and production of your video.
  • Although you can of course make your own videos with a digital camera, it is highly recommended to leave it to the professionals and commission a production company. The cost will not be insignificant, but relative to the time, cost and effort of traditional Business engagement approaches, an effective video can be the best value for money that you spend on your project. It certainly has been for me.
  • Think about the potential longevity of the video and its messages, i.e. you want as long a shelf-life as possible. Ideally your video will be used throughout your Business Change activities, and beyond. Try to avoid making time bound statements as these will quickly become out of date.
  • Make sure you use ‘real’ people. Use your network of Champions and Super Users, and seek volunteers from the Business; their words will have more influence and impact than those of your IS or project team members.
  • Keep the video short and snappy; 3-4 minutes is about right. Cover off the basics; the ‘what’, ‘why’, ‘how’ and ‘where’, but be careful about the ‘when’, particularly considering the longevity of the video.
  • Try to showcase some screenshots of the system, especially the parts that are unlikely to change frequently and those where you want the audience to the directed towards.
  • Use your most Senior Sponsor to sum it up and emphasise a sense of purpose in the Business Change that is needed. Again this is probably best not being the Head of IS or an IS Director, but a key manager who represents the Business.
  • Try and weave all of this into some kind of story that has a meaningful flow, but equally, don’t try and script it too much. Certainly you should make sure that your participants are well briefed, perhaps send them some example questions with some possible answers or topics to mention. This will ensure that you get sufficient coverage of your key themes and messages. You definitely don’t want them reading verbatim responses from a script. It comes across much more natural and convincing when it’s in their own words.
  • Above all, keep it fun and light hearted!

How should you use the video?

The short answer; as often as possible! Look to use it as a presentation aid or intro to be used at every new Business engagement session, team meeting, forum, and training session. You should also host it on your project/system intranet page and direct people to it and refer to it in company newsletters and internal communications. Basically, the more you use it, the more value you’ll get from it.