Communicating with your employees is imperative so that the business is a success and functions well. Don’t forget that your employees are your most valuable resource given that today, it is almost impossible for a business to function without a strong workforce.
Your team is equally a reflection of your brand. Happy and well-rounded employees don’t hesitate to sing the praises of your business and offer you excellent free publicity. Inversely, unsatisfied employees will badmouth your business’ image to which any external branding campaigns will not be able to rectify. This will result in your business attracting less candidates during recruitment and also less clients and partners.
Discover what is internal communication, its importance and how to improve it with these 5 pieces of advice.
Internal Communication: Definition and Importance
According to Study.com, internal communication includes all communication aimed at its employees carried out within the company or organisation. It depends on the department of human resources or communication.
In order to be productive and to feel good at work, your employees need to know that the business is healthy and that the work they do there contributes to it, hence the importance of internal communication.
Internal communication benefits are extensive, from being a managerial and motivational tool to aiding many other functions to:
- Circulate information
- Increase results
- Explain new strategies
- Motivate employees
- Cultivate employees feeling a sense of belonging in the business
- Reinforce the connection between employees and their superiors
- Improve the general atmosphere of the company
Internal communication is based around multiple different types of media:
- Written communication through posters, the company’s newsletter, the welcome booklet
- Oral Communication in meetings, conferences, business seminars, internal radio shows
- Audio-visual Communication thanks to video production
- Electronic communication across the internet, intranet, an internal newsletter and the social media sites of the company
- The organisation of internal events and team building activities
How to improve internal communication at the heart of your business?
To boost your internal communication, don’t hesitate to combine many communication methods and to follow these following 5 pieces of advice.
1. Distinguish different types of information
All of the information that circulates in your business are not to be communicated to everyone. In order to avoid creating problematic situations, start by categorising the information into criteria such as:
- Its importance
- Its urgency
- Its level of confidentiality
- Its target (all your employees, to a certain department, or uniquely to the managerial team)
- Its method of circulation, internal or external
In this way, you will be sure to transmit the right information to the right audience. You avoid all leaks of personal details and every employee will receive all the information that they will need in order to perform daily to their highest level.
2. Communication adapted to your business
Your internal communication strategy essentially depends on the size of your business. A start-up or a SMB will not have the same communication budget as a multinational business.
Therefore, put in place an internal communication system adapted to your financial capacity, your employees and your industry. For example, if you are specialised in emerging technology and 90% of our employees are technologically orientated, they will be a lot more receptive to electronic communication than by paper.
3. Make the most of New Technology
Today, multiple different apps and software exist to aid team interaction all with the end intention to improve the productivity of your employees. For instance, the collaborative platform Wimi centralises all a projects documents, sensitive data, whilst allowing an easy communication exchange between employees thanks to functions such as video/audio calls, screen sharing, instant messaging and calendar sharing.
The advantage of these tools is that they prevent a large number of useless meetings as you can easily access all the documents and information that you need in order to progress and complete your projects instantly.
Finally, with more and more teams working at a distance, equally assure yourselves that these internal communication tools are compatible with your employees’ smartphones and tablets.
4. Encourage Conversation
The best internal communication is carried out on two levels. Encourage your employees to: share their ideas with you, give their advice to improve working conditions, be critical and propose solutions for improvement taking in consideration the companies working environment.
For that reason, you must remain open, available and listen. For example, every week, plan in a timeslot of one or two hours with your employees to meet up with them either in groups or individually, as they would like. Equally, you can create a real or virtual idea box on the company’s collaborative platform, or regularly carry out interactive satisfaction surveys.
5. Maintain high team spirit
Naturally, employees that get on well will communicate together better. Team spirit is of primary importance in order to create a pleasant working environment where everyone knows one another, gets involved and helps each other, in order for the project to progress as rapidly as possible.
In order to do so, it is necessary to regularly organise friendly, social and informal meetings outside of the office. For example, every Monday morning welcome your fellow employees with an informal breakfast, eat lunch in a restaurant together from time to time, play sport together, go for work drinks every Friday to celebrate the weekend! Ideas such as these will never run out. Furthermore, why not propose to your employees to organise such events to involve them more?
Finally, don’t neglect a welcome party for the arrival of new employees! In order to help them to immerse themselves into the heart of the team quickly, organise a welcome pot and a quick presentation on the business and each employees function/background.
To quote Jean-Luc Lagardère: “Communication is a difficult science. It is not exactly a science, but it is something that is learned and cultivated.” Follow this advice and find an internal communication strategy best adapted to your business and employees.