Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd.: Driving Change Through Internal Communication
Posted: 12 Mar 2012
Date Written: April 5, 2011
Hindustan Petroleum (HPCL), confronted in 2003 with an urgent need to change how it operated externally, adopted a highly innovative approach to communicating internally. This case, set in 2010, presents an overview of the new, more interactive model of employee communication that HPCL introduced as part of its effort to adapt to increased market competition during the early 21st century. (HPCL, previously a wholly state-owned company within a state-controlled industry, had begun to operate in an increasingly privatized environment.) At the center of the new model was a series of "vision workshops"-structured conversations in which employees at all levels of the company took part in developing strategic and organizational visions for their regional offices, for their business units, and for the company as a whole. The case also discusses HPCL's use of digital technology to enhance employee communication; its leaders' increased emphasis on direct, "one-to-one" interaction with employees; and some of the consequences (both external and internal) of this more conversational model of organizational communication. As of 2010, HPCL was a Fortune Global 500 company, with more than 11,000 employees and with annual revenues of more than $23 billion. The question that company leaders now faced was whether HPCL's novel approaches to communicating with employees were appropriate to its next stage of internal development and external growth.
Learning Objective: To depict an innovative, intensive use of internal communication practices to help manage a difficult organizational change effort.
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