The basis of company management is internal communication. Efficient and well-organized can increase employee productivity, streamline internal processes and increase profits.
Internal communication is a process of continuous exchange of information between company employees. It can be vertical (transfer of information from superiors to subordinates and back again) and horizontal (transfer of information within teams, among colleagues or between departments). Effective internal communication allows managers to hear employees on time and make the right decisions. So how to organize it?
Effective corporate communication – tips and tricks
The strategy of creating one communication space is a solution to the following problems:
- shaping uniform standards of conduct in accordance with the corporate code and company ethics;
- overcome communication gaps to achieve mutual understanding at all levels;
- receiving feedback from the company’s employees (each employee needs to understand that his or her opinion is important and will be taken into account, and the employee needs convenient tools to provide that opinion and get feedback quickly);
- increasing employee loyalty.
To address all of these issues, you need the right approach, action plan and a work environment that is open to dialogue.
Develop communication strategy
What goals does the communication have to achieve? What is its current status and what can be improved? What tools can you use? How quickly do you want to achieve your goals?
The answers to these questions will help you create an internal communications strategy and action plan. How you do it depends only on you, the specifics of your business and the characteristics of your team. Take into account all the factors that can affect the efficiency of communication in the company. And remember that a well formulated strategy should be updated on an ongoing basis and must meet the current needs of the team and the company.
Use the right tools
Your employees are busy at work, and the last thing they need is intrusive and incomprehensible communication within the company. Fortunately, with the rise of internal communication practices, many digital tools have emerged to make it simpler and more enjoyable: social media, internal mailing, employee chats, intranets, data sharing and video chat platforms and apps, digital instant messaging, etc.
Adapt your style and tools to your audience
The key to communicating effectively with your team is choosing the right way to deliver information to specific audiences. There are different groups of employees in your company – young people, accustomed to digital solutions and semi-formal communication style, people in their 40s and 50s, preferring formal style and more traditional tools, manual workers without company computers, people working remotely. For each of these groups, you need to adapt your communication methods and tools to achieve your goals.
Use visuals and multimedia
According to research, most people absorb information better when it’s presented in a visually engaging way and remember it longer. So you can create informative infographics, use photos and videos, and animations instead of dry and boring text.
Provide feedback channels
Employee feedback is essential to the success of any business. Think about it, what is the value of a thought or idea if it is never expressed? Therefore, provide opportunities for employees to provide feedback and share ideas and comments. For example, this could be a company forum on a closed website or a whiteboard in the office.
Encourage departments to communicate with each other
If one of your company’s internal communications goals is to share experiences, interaction between departments is key to achieving this. Schedule a Q&A session where colleagues can ask each other questions, or bring different teams and departments together to discuss current tasks and share experiences.
Avoid overloading employees with information
Keep in mind the simple rules: don’t complicate, keep it simple, short and to the point. Try to reduce the frequency of company newsletters or at least don’t overload them with content. Focus on providing the most important and key information.
Have an open door policy
A company’s internal communication system should allow every employee to interact with co-workers, including senior management. An open door policy encourages interaction and active participation in company activities. It also helps build respectful and trusting relationships within the team.
Build a friendly atmosphere
Atmosphere is crucial to internal communication because it builds trust and encourages dialogue. Your team needs to feel confident and safe to share ideas, make comments and ask questions. Acknowledge even the smallest employee successes, celebrate company accomplishments with them, and motivate them to take action.
Eliminate factors detrimental to effective communication
Ask yourself if the communication processes in your company are good and if they are fulfilling their tasks. If not, try to identify the reasons for this. The most common are such factors as:
- conflicts between employees;
- a toxic leader or manager who is feared and distrusted by subordinates;
- reluctance of employees to ask for help;
- lack of constructive criticism and feedback;
- mistakes made by employees, most often resulting from insufficient qualifications, but also private problems, professional burnout, etc.
Even the best planned and implemented communication strategy will not help if you do not eliminate current problems in the whole process. Effective information flow within the company is such an important and crucial issue that it is worth investing in expert help or special training. Sometimes it may simply be necessary, but this is an aspect of business that is not worth saving on.
Main article image: photo by Morsa Images / Stone / Getty Images)