Are you looking to embark on the exciting journey of launching a digital champions programme within your organisation?
Well, hold on to your keyboards because we’ve gathered a few of our change and technology adoption specialists in one virtual room to ask them: ‘What are the common mistakes to avoid when rolling out a digital champions programme?’
Here’s what they shared…
Mistake #1: Telling instead of encouraging
A champions programme should be open to everyone in the organisation to put themselves forward, regardless of seniority. Encourage your people to join rather than telling them they need to join.
The most important factor when choosing your champions is the unique qualities they bring. If they’ve already got Microsoft 365 or digital skills, great, but if they haven’t, these can always be taught.
Mistake #2: Providing impersonalised Microsoft 365 training
Your champions are your advocates, your tech ambassadors, your problem-solvers, open to change, and respected amongst peers. If you don’t equip them with the proper training they need, they can’t thrive in their important role as a champion.
Training should be structured and delivered by expert trainers to boost digital skills and know-how, but in a way that suits them. We all learn in different ways, so it’s important that all learning styles are covered.
And if the training isn’t fun and engaging with challenges and quizzes thrown in for good measure, then expect your participants to switch off! Zzz…
Mistake #3: Delivering inconsistent and incoherent comms
From introducing the concept of your digital champions programme to the post-launch comms and everything in between, messages need to be clear, logical, and structured to make your communications campaign a success.
You need a solid framework that gives your people the information they need when it comes to business strategy, the project leading the change, and where they sit as digital champions within the bigger picture.
It’s common for organisations to launch and go quiet. Messaging should be drip-fed at regular intervals throughout the life of your champions campaign. We call this drumbeat comms.
Whether it’s user guides, training materials, or top tips in video format, keep content varied and engaging. If it’s outdated, get rid of it. Engaged champions are effective champions.
Mistake #4: Forgetting the human element
Digital transformation isn’t just about machines, it’s about people. How can this new tool within Microsoft 365 make a coworker’s day a little brighter? This perspective can make all the difference for champions to guide their peers.
You also want to avoid people thinking this is another task to do in an already busy working day. As a champion they can build belief in themselves, develop new skills, and make a real impact within your organisation. Clarify their purpose.
Mistake #5: Overlooking diversity
Technology knows no gender, age, or background boundaries. When planning your champions recruitment campaign, make sure your digital champions represent different departments, skill levels, and demographics. You’re not only promoting inclusivity but making sure there’s a wide range of beliefs and ideas on the new technology being introduced.
Mistake #6: Setting unrealistic expectations
To gain buy-in from potential champions, you need to give a realistic picture of what’s expected of them, including the benefits and time they’ll need to commit. If they know what they’re signing up for, you’ll avoid disengagement and dropouts.
Change doesn’t happen overnight, so it’s a good idea to stick to the milestones you’ve set, focus on gradual progress, and celebrate wins along the way.
Mistake #7: Ignoring feedback
Champions are on the frontline, working closely with peers. If they raise concerns or suggest improvements – listen up! Ignoring feedback from champions is like hitting ‘snooze’ on the alarm… never a good idea.
Mistake #8: Underestimating cynicism
Know and expect that not everyone will embrace change with open arms. There’ll be sceptics and resistance, and that’s normal. Your champions need to understand this and be ready to handle objections and doubt.
Pre-prepared persuasive responses and patience – it’s all part of the transformative process.
Mistake #10: Neglecting reward and recognition
Ready to rock and roll (out)?
Launching a Microsoft 365 digital champions programme requires careful planning and a whole lot of teamwork.
By avoiding these common pitfalls, you’re already a few steps closer to making your digital change a success. If you need a helping hand, drop us a line.