The current crisis is, unfortunately, showing few signs of easing and the majority of companies are still facing a number of challenges – among these, there’s employee engagement.
In order to be as effective as possible, internal comms experts have to wear a lot of hats. From keeping employees informed of everything, from the most benign company updates to the news that impacts people’s lives, their channels of communication need to be open and dynamic.
But at the same time, internal communicators also need to gauge the thoughts and feelings of the workforce, make sure they’re doing everything possible to get workers accessing comms, and encourage leaders to step aside from their usual duties to reach out to the organization.
Whatever business you have, you’ll be providing a service or creating a product for a customer, client, or consumer. But quite often, employees will lose sight of the end goal. Reminding your people of the real-life difference their work is making to people’s lives is essential in keeping the big picture in view.
This bird’s eye perspective allows them to see a purpose in their jobs: whether it’s a salesperson on the floor or a staff member on a production line. Motivation provides an array of positive feelings, instilling a sense of pride in their work, a push to develop their role, increased satisfaction, and a desire to do things better.
In short, motivated employees improve the organization’s efficiency and bottom line! But there’s a bunch of questions we should all be asking ourselves:
Are you choosing the right comms channels?
Not all employees use the same digital tools. The platforms used by desk employees will be different from those used by frontline workers, for example. Therefore, an analysis must be run to check whether your comms are getting picked up by everyone. There could be a segment of your workforce that is unknowingly missing out!
Without good internal comms in place, employees will feel left in the dark, uninformed, and without direction. It’s essential that every member of your organization gets access to all important messages, and working out the audience segmentation for each communication platform is highly recommended.
So, find out which comms channels your employees are using, when, and where. Your messages should work with the times that individuals are working, whether that’s the late shift or a different time zone.
Are your leaders communicating?
Leadership comms are essential to motivating staff. While internal communications fulfil a significant role in keeping employees informed, messages from the senior level have a real motivational impact. When people are working from home, a business can easily become faceless, as individual workers clear to-do lists and try to stay ahead of the game. For remote employees, communication is more important than ever. We need to feel part of a community, we need to be kept in the loop, and we need to know that those at the top are aware of the rest of us.
Hearing from the people in charge of your organization can not only inform but also reduce feelings of anxiety or discontent. When senior-level management provides its employees with news or updates, it can boost morale, improve productivity, and employee satisfaction.
Are you encouraging team leaders to foster a positive culture?
As we continue to work with dispersed employees, it has never been more important to build and maintain a strong team culture. Team managers should be encouraged to go beyond their regular duties to ensure their team spirit isn’t hampered by their different working locations.
There are countless digital tools that allow instant messaging, virtual meetings, video chat, and team huddles. Managers should find software that works to bring their team together, and while you’re communicating remember: that camaraderie seen in the office comes just as much from friendly banter as it does from your collective successes!
Are you connecting employees to a purpose?
People’s approach to work is vastly improved when they have a purpose. In fact, when they feel part of the bigger picture, it creates a motivation that provides long-lasting benefits: when leaders connect their employees to purpose, they are 373% more likely to have a strong sense of purpose, 747% more likely to be highly engaged, and 49% less likely to burn out. Employees see intrinsic value in belonging to an organization driven to solve problems, make situations easier, and help people!
A strong sense of duty is a massive asset to a business, who will see improved retention, productivity, and a happier working culture because of it. And after a wearying time in lockdown, employees need to feel this sense of purpose in their work. It’s essential to motivation, happiness, and direction.
The simple fact of the matter is that work can be a huge boost for people right now. However, the tactical side of work, the deadlines, the ticking off of procedures, the completion of tasks must be balanced with a more community-focused approach.
Re-framing the remote workplace, as a space for employees to communicate, problem-solve, collaborate, and be valued, can be extremely rewarding, both for workers and the organization. In order to make workers motivated, you need to make work motivating, and as internal communicators, it’s up to you to help bring this shift in perspective about!