Effective internal communication and financial performance are strongly interrelated: companies that are highly effective at communication are 1.7 times as likely to outperform their peers [1]. It breaks down obstacles, increases employee engagement, inspires collaboration and improves business process. Internal communication gains exclusive importance especially in today’s workplace, where teamwork, technology and remote working are becoming commonplace. It is not so much about its form but its content.

Despite the multitude of communication platforms in today’s workplace, the potential of internal communication often remains underexploited in many organizations. The opportunity to keep employees motivated, informed and engaged is therefore getting missed.

A relatively new and interesting trend has to be noticed when it comes to communication – consumerization of HR. Workplace futurist Jeanne Meister describes it as “the new objective to create one employer brand which provides a seamless experience for current employees, potential employees, and consumers… the creation of the type of memorable employee experiences we associate with extraordinary customer experiences.[2] ”

The lines between human resources, communications, IT, sales and marketing are blurring. If you want to sell a product on the market, would you sell it like: “Dear All, please find attached our new service effective as of next Monday.”? Nobody would buy.

Consumerization is neither good nor bad; it is what we do with it. So why not using it as an opportunity to create an engaging and positive experience for your current and future employees and customers at the same time?

Here are a few tips to turn your internal communication into an engaging and positive work experience:

1. DON'T BE OFFICIAL
Let go of official style messages. Imagine if your employees would be your customers. Would they buy from your monotonous and formal messages? Seek interactivity, ask questions and include call-to-actions.

2. COMMUNICATE PURPOSE
A well-functioning internal communication must motivate employees to work towards a common goal. It is essential to regularly talk about your organization's mission and values because it increases their engagement significantly.

3. USE VIDEO
1 minute of video content is in fact worth 1.8 million words. Research says that posting a video not only increases the likelihood of views and shares but also raises the understanding of your product by 74% (StaffBase).

4. LET EMPLOYEES CREATE CONTENT
The new generations seek authenticity, which is absolutely necessary for creating a successful employer brand. Turning your employees into content creators will create strong company advocates and support the decentralization at your workplace.

5. GAMIFY
Gamification is known to enhance productivity and engagement. Create purposeful competitions and contests, seek to train through entertaining. For instance: transform onboarding of a new employee into an information treasure hunt.

6. USE EMOTICONS AND .GIFs
Another way to avoid formality and boredom is using these. They add emotion to messages, making them more memorable. They help express not only thoughts but also feelings, and help to create a sense of connection.

7. DO STORYTELLING
Another great way to build connection among your employees is to communicate through stories. Storytelling appeals to emotion-driven decision-making, activates curiosity and engage. Make the audience feel something and they will listen and act more promptly.

8. ENCOURAGE INTERACTIVITY
Communication is a two-way process and the voice of every employee is equally important. Find the right channels and tools to make this happen.

9. MEASURE
Use quantitative and qualitative measurement tools, such as counting number of responses and requests, tracking social media statistics, use polls, collect feedback and make group discussions. This will help you monitor people's engagement and see what works best.

 

References

[1] https://www.towerswatson.com/en-US/Insights/IC-Types/Survey-Research-Results/2012/01/2011-2012-Change-and-Communication-ROI-Study-Report

[2] https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeannemeister/2017/01/05/the-employee-experience-is-the-future-of-work-10-hr-trends-for-2017/#51ea50a920a6