Communication is so important in any company, whether it’s a giant, multinational firm or a small pet shop. Without the management and employees on the same page, so to speak, it would be impossible to achieve a company’s goals. Simply put, communication can affect the company’s operations.
This is why many firms plan and implement internal communication strategies. These strategies are aimed to improve communication in the workplace.
On the part of the management, internal communication strategies serve to inform the workforce about the direction of the organization. Meanwhile, employees will not only know about the goals of the company, but also how they can contribute towards the achievement of the said goals.
If you’re one of those people in charge of drawing up internal communication strategies, you may want to bear in mind the following mistakes in crafting an internal communication plan:
1. Sticking to traditional communication tools
In crafting internal communication strategies, it would be wise to consider the target audience and identify the communication tools they are most likely to use.
Traditional communication tools like newsletter, emails, and even Intranet have their uses, times are changing quickly that it is time for internal communicators to adapt especially if the workforce is relatively young.
Tapping new communication channels such as desktop alerts, instant messaging system, video conferencing, among others, can work wonders for any company, particularly those with a younger workforce.
After all, members of the so-called Generation Y or the Millennials are glued to their smartphones that it may be a challenge for corporate communicators to reach out to them through traditional communication tools.
According to a 2014 Nielsen survey, smartphone penetration among younger workers has reached more than 85 percent. Simply put, younger workers are more inclined to read and answer push app notifications and even text messages instead of reading corporate newsletters.
2. Lack of analytical tools
Even the most advanced communication tool should be subject to regular review and optimization. The use of analytical tools can let corporate communicators see how well (or how poorly) their campaigns are going.
That’s why the use of modern workplace solutions such as collaborative software which enable workers to share data and information in real time and instant messaging software appeal to many business leaders, because these solutions can be readily tracked or monitored.
Even results of traditional communication methods should be tracked and analyzed. For example, business communicators can track how many clicks a story on the corporate Intranet gets. This can give them a better idea of which type of stories or articles that employees enjoy reading.
3. Not listening to employee feedback
A lot of companies still focus on maintaining one-way communication. Messages are relayed using various communication channels, from the email, intranet, company newsletter, and even public address system. But companies, or internal communications experts to be in particular, fail to get the feedback from the employees.
Failure to solicit feedback is one of the reasons why employees are often disengaged. A survey by global consulting firm, BlessingWhite, reports that 24 percent of employees admit becoming disengage when they took a survey with no follow up. The same survey showed that 19 percent were disengaged when their company didn’t listen to their suggestions.
Because they’re at the heart of a company’s operations, employees can come up with a thousand and one ways to improve processes in the workplace. However, only a few companies know how to listen to their employees.
After all, listening to the employees involves risks as opinions may not always be favorable. But at least, management can show that it values the inputs of its workforce by listening to them.