Everything is so important. We wouldn’t go through all the hurdles and approval gates to publish front page news, employee communiqués, and share updates with the communities unless we believed in the value of our communication work.
Everything is not so important. People survive missing news. People survive holidays away from the intranet and company channels. People catch up on their emails in half a day and get on with their work.
We don’t deserve the attention of our colleagues any more than our website / company website deserves its audiences. We can earn attention and develop trust though.
We have to offer content of value; we have to be accessible, relevant, useful, timely, rich, and actionable. The key word is relevant.
Those department heads and managers who claim that their latest internal change needs to be communicated to ‘everyone’ because it’s a ‘Company matter’ are delusional. Minor departmental changes are rarely relevant to every member of staff. Process changes are rarely relevant to every employee.
The change to the expense process is potentially relevant to every employee, but it isn’t actually, because not every employee is currently claiming expenses. Communicate the expenses change to those who have claimed in the last three months. Mention the change within the expense system – at the point of need. That’s all that is required.
To understand relevancy, communicators have to empathise with audience members and realise they are asking ‘what’s in it for me?’ every time they scan-read a title or paragraph.
Nobody’s logging on to the mobile intranet at 7:15am eager to see that a policy has been updated.
Whatever good we did yesterday, as communicators, we have to build on our credibility every day. We have to earn it every day.
[ Wedge ]
- Read ‘Talk about what’s in it for them‘ for my past thoughts.
Photo credit: e5jay
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