Fortune 100 companies have one thing in common: engaged and empowered employees. These multinational companies have developed various strategies and tools to enhance employee engagement in the organization. The way they are all connected through an effective internal communication strategy contributes to the success of the company through exceptional business results.
It is not only about making employees involved in their work, it is more about making them connect with each other and lead them to the company's goals. This is a big help that has made the company's efforts successful. It is the right organizational culture that can build a powerful company brand that has been made possible with effective internal communication systems.
A company's internal communications strategies must be developed to achieve employee engagement and empowerment. An effective internal communication plan is essential in building an organizational culture that promotes transparency between the employees and management.
“Employee engagement is an approach designed to give the employees opportunities to show their commitment to the organization's values and goals. They are motivated to work hard to contribute to the success of the organization while at the same time, enhancing their own sense of well-being.” (Miller, 2013).
With the onset of technology and the various ways that media has affected organizations, there has been a rapid change in the way things are being done. Previous strategies of communication and employee engagement may not be effective with the new scenario in the business world.
All Things IC's Internal Communications and Social Media Strategist Rachel Miller shares the four enablers that can help in achieving an employee engagement:
1. Providing a solid strategic narrative about the company, how it started, where it's going and what its goals are. At this point, a good communication and employee engagement strategy entails reminding their employees about the company's mission/vision. They inform them of what they are currently doing in order to achieve the objectives and how they can be of help in reaching them.
2. There is a need for engaging managers who know how to lead their people by treating them fairly and providing opportunities for them to learn and improve their skills. Employees are human beings and they are not just human resources. An empowering leadership calls for the skills of being able to show compassion to the employees, demonstrate an authentic self, have integrity, and be able to treat their employees as partners.
3. Employee's voice must be heard. A good Internal Communications encourages and motivates employees to express their views, reinforce and challenge each other's perspectives. Employees are among the essential factors that can bring the best solution to any challenge. Provide opportunities for your employees to communicate and always listen to what they have to say.
4. Organizational integrity can be achieved by providing inspiring messages that reflect the company's values and remind employees of them as they try their best to reflect them in their daily behavior. These communication messages can be posted on the walls in the building or put up to the sign boards, or on the screen monitors if the company has digital signage.
Management need to demonstrate not only by words but also by actions that whatever they do, their aims are genuine and authentic. Employees will know the difference between a fake intent and a real one.
To become the best at what they do, the Internal Communications can help empower employees by informing them what's going on. Building deep connections with their employees is also one of the keys to establishing respect and rapport with the staff. Informal conversations at the cafeteria, in the washroom, or online during non-working hours can greatly affect the employees' perception of their leaders and of the company. It means their leaders care for them and like them as a person and not just happy when they are performing well at work.
A manager who takes the time to learn the language of his employees is going to be respected and appreciated better by the staff and the organization. Likewise, managers who can empower their employees by building deeper connection with them and showing them that they are concerned of their welfare and do something to help them improve their lives, are the company's assets. They are the type of leaders that people will look up and respect. They can greatly improve communication and employee engagement.