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Vital Internal Communication Strategies

January 14, 2004

Internal communications is considered a vital tool for building an organization, enhancing employee morale, promoting transparency and reducing turnover. Ironically, while everybody understands and talks about the significance of internal communication, very few are able to manage it efficiently. Both the long-term and short-term fallout of ineffective internal communication can be damaging for an organization. It can start from the spread of rumors to disillusionment among employees to a gradual destruction of the company’s brand image. Worse, it may also lead to the slow death of the organization. However, few organizations address internal communications. Determining what should be communicated to staff, when it should be communicated, and how it should be communicated is often left up to the decisions of individuals made when there seems to be a need. In other words internal communication strategies are developed, reactively, when there is a crisis or major event that clearly requires addressing communication issues. Where communication is planned out, it is often around upheavals like major corporate or organization change, layoffs and downsizing, and technological change. However, once the initiating focus has been eliminated, communication tends to go back to an unorganized incoherent process. It is a wonder why this occurs (Chaos Theory), but there is no question that strategic internal communication planning can be a proactive approach to building a better, more directed and efficient workforce. It is well-known that the root cause of most internal problems being faced by a company often stems from ineffective communication.  It is therefore necessary to identify the best possible methods to reach your message to the target audience—in this case, your employees.  Here are some possible  ways:

  • Enable a two-way flow of information between employees and management.
  • Be integrated with the overall business strategy.
  • Have a long-term focus.
  • Communicate clear values and goals and be sure they are implemented.
  • Be comprehensive.
  • Utilize appropriate methods of communication.
  • Have consistent messages.
  • Engage Social Media by setting up forums, blogs, etc for employees to discussions.
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