Effective internal communication is important in any organization, whether it is an established institution or a start-up eager to make its mark. Through internal communication, a company can ensure that all members of the organization, from the executives, middle managers to the rank and file, are working collaboratively towards achieving a common goal. It also helps in developing a corporate culture, and leads to enhanced efficiency and productivity.
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There are many benefits of an effective internal communication program. Perhaps the most important of these is the impact it has on employee engagement. The most critical asset of a company is its human resource, and employees will feel valued if their leaders communicate well with them. In turn, the staff can become more productive.
Internal communication should be a two-way process. Aside from imparting the goals of the organization to the staff, it also gives leaders the opportunity to understand employees’ needs and how to meet those so they can motivate and engage their workers.
Moreover, it ensures that there is open communication within an institution. It fosters unity and instills a cooperative atmosphere at the workplace, where things are done more effectively.
So how does a company communicate well with its employees? Here are some methods that companies can adopt for an effective internal communication program:
- Creating an Intranet Site
An intranet site is basically an internal database which employees can access. It allows an organization to share information online, and update it regularly.
Through an intranet site, leaders, managers, and staff can share information across the board. It is particularly useful for publishing information on changed processes. However it is a costly platform especially when compared to newsletters, emails, or blogs. It is best suited to firms with at least 30 workers. It is also ideal for companies with geographically dispersed staff.
- Regular Staff Meeting
Regular staff meetings, especially small group meetings, are still considered by many bosses as the best way to engage their employees. Small group meetings can help in creating tighter bonds. For employees, it also gives them the best opportunity to speak their minds.
However, the conduct of meetings also has its downsides. For one, it is time-consuming. As such many bosses prefer to use online tools instead to update their workers.
- Send a Company Newsletter
Monthly company newsletters can summarize news and updates for the ordinary employee. It should inform the staff about the latest developments in the organization, such as sales goals and progress, any award or recognition that the business has received, new hires, and anything else that bosses feel should be told to the rest of the company.
A four-page newsletter should be enough to carry all these pieces of information. The newsletter ought to have well-written articles. Longer articles may be cut short by including a brief description, with a link to the full article on the web.
- Create Videos
Producing videos may appear time-consuming and expensive for most companies but it cannot be denied that this is one of the best ways to capture the attention of busy employees. This is particularly true in this age when everyone seems to be glued on their mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
More and more companies are taking a YouTube-like approach to audio-visual presentations, introducing video libraries that enable their workers to search for videos. This set-up also allows the staff to make comments, tag or embed them on their own social media channels as a means of sharing information and knowledge.
- Tap Employee Ambassadors
Employee ambassadors can replace the company CEO as the trusted source of organizational information. In 2012, the Edelman Trust Barometer survey which gathers and interprets data from more than 30,000 individuals showed that rank and file employees enjoy more credibility than executives. This only underlines the potential of employees to become brand ambassadors, who will act as the eyes and ears of the organization on the ground.
- Solicit Employee Feedback
Companies should solicit employee feedback from the staff as often as possible. This can be done through suggestion boxes or employee surveys. Other companies also conduct town hall meetings or adopt an open door policy.
Soliciting employee feedback promotes a sense of camaraderie, which would bode well for an institution in terms of increased productivity. Employee loyalty and sense of well-being should also be harnessed.
These are just six ideas that can inspire internal communication managers in building an effective internal communication strategy. Although it is not necessary for a company to implement all of these ideas, putting some of them into play should be a good start.