Cyto means cell, and cells keep an organism alive and thriving. The cells of an organization are its people. Cyto Communications helps organizations succeed by improving communication with and among their people…people who make the difference between surviving and succeeding. Whether you’re challenged by change or enticed by opportunity, Cyto delivers clarity, purpose, momentum, and financial results through strategic and creative organizational communication.
By tapping more than one body of knowledge Effective organizational communication takes more than one tool kit. It takes a blend. Marketing helps. Management theory offers insight. Behavior Modification models help explain complexity. Cyto blends all three. And because we’re quick to credit others and cite our sources, you don’t get opaque, “proprietary” methodology. What you get are the right resources, open minds, talent, and a collaborative process that result in the best solutions for your specific situation.
Human Resource Initiatives:Recruitment Retention Associate Referral New Hire Orientation Benefits Roll-out Work/Life Programs Attitude Research
While it is the world’s largest lodging Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) – owner of over 125 properties, representing 18 brands in 50+ major markets around the globe – Host has a very select universe of stakeholders with whom communication is vital: its associates, shareholders, partners, and the General Managers of its properties. As part of our continuing relationship, Cyto has worked closely with Host’s senior management team to meet a variety of communications challenges with a fresh and focused integration of strategic and creative services. Our work with Host includes:
Facilitation of a senior executive retreat to develop corporate values
A corporate identity and graphic standards manual
Investor Relations presentation materials and ads
Co-producing Host’s annual General Managers Best In Class Awards conference
Host Hotels & Resorts
Cyto facilitated an off-site for Host’s senior executives resulting in articulation of the company’s EPIC values later rendered on a poster. Framed reproductions are displayed throughout the offices and laminated onto associates’ ID badges.
Cyto worked with Host’s Human Resources team to redevelop the company intranet, including its name, architecture, and layout. We worked with Host’s internal IT department on site deployment.
In order to tease the intranet launch and build interest in the site, Cyto developed an internal campaign – posters and online – to promote features of the soon-to-be-launched site.
As part of an initiative to enhance recruitment – while candidly showcasing Host’s culture – Cyto produced and directed a video featuring associates talking about the company in their own words.
When Host Marriott became Host Hotels & Resorts, the new corporate ID called for a standards manual that would go beyond rules for using the logo and communication protocols. The on-line and aluminum-bound book also spelled out workplace brand attributes to inspire associates to bring the Host culture to life.
For Host, the investment community is a vital stakeholder universe. So Cyto customized PowerPoint presentations to showcase Host properties and business strategy as Best In Class.
For several years, Cyto has been an integral part of an internal team, helping to concept, produce, design, and execute a two-day, global General Managers business meeting and gala awards dinner.Each year, the theme and focus mirror business priorities.
Say “PowerPoint deck” and await a reaction that’s equal parts fear and disgust. Thanks to Cyto, however, Host’s presentations to its general managers convey important business updates and strategy, while scoring points for imagination and design. Colorful, dynamic presentations merge management priorities and entertainment.
Using video to showcase a hotel’s “green” Best Practices is not unique. But watching a hotel General Manager – wearing a business suit – deliver his lines from the middle of a swimming pool, does make the point memorable.
Amerock(a Newell Rubbermaid Company) Amerock manufactures and sells decorative cabinet and appliance hardware to retailers and the construction industry. Among its principle challenges: constant innovation and development of new products. Cyto designed and facilitated a cross-functional, innovation off-site with Amerock’s marketing, product development, and sales teams.
An innovation off-site meeting, designed and facilitated by Cyto, formed the beginning an on-going cross-functional process to fill the pipeline of product innovation ideas.Team members explored challenge questions through multiple perspectives from the Value Chain, the economics of information, and “TRIZ,” to disruption, “Blue Ocean,” customer value hierarchies, and more.The result: fresh communication and collaboration across silos; new ideas; new working groups; and a new Project Charter for an ongoing creative process.
Baltimore Substance Abuse Systems, Inc. bSAS is the organization that sets the spending priorities for tens of millions of dollars in state and local funding for drug prevention and treatment in the City of Baltimore. Its mission is far reaching, yet intimate: help free individuals from the ravages of addiction. bSAS was looking for a new logo that spoke to this mission. What Cyto delivered was a comprehensive process establishing objective criteria by which a new corporate ID could be developed and judged. The results?
A new logo mark and logo type
A tagline that captures the bSAS mission and purpose
New designs for print and electronic documents
An inspiring, simple to follow standards manual
Rather than appear as a quasi-governmental agency, Cyto designed an ID that illustrates the journey an addicted person must take.
Stationery design brings consistency and a level of professionalism to the brand.
Cyto wrote and designed a comprehensive standards manual to provide usage guidelines as well as the strategic foundation on which printed and electronic communication is based.
Vision Technology Services Vision Technology Services is one of the mid-Atlantic region’s fastest growing IT staff augmentation and project management services companies. The company’s business is human resources, and their “customers” are both companies that rely on consultants as well as the consultants themselves. Vision turned to Cyto to help refine their marketplace brand so that it is fully integrated and consistent with its workplace brand – while keeping both compelling to different audiences.
While day-to-day staff augmentation decisions are made by hiring managers, a place on the preferred vendor list usually depends on an internal “sponsor” in the executive suite.In order to appeal to both staff and line level individuals, Cyto developed messaging and positing focused on “execution” – the intersection of strategic and tactical priorities.By developing and communicating its expertise in IT project management, Vision’s value propositions are compelling for the consultants it seeks torecruit as well as for the senior executives it seeks to serve.
Harmon, Curran, Speilberg + Eisenberg LLC This progressive, Washington DC-based law firm had been stuck for over a year trying to decide what to include in their Web site redesign. In collaboration with the partners, Cyto pointed the way forward. Cyto facilitated a partner workshop that clarified communications objectives, mapped the firm’s workplace and marketplace brand attributes, and set forth the criteria by which a design solution could developed and assessed. With this approach, Cyto went on to deliver:
A strategic communications plan
Objective criteria on which to judge creative solutions
A new way to define the firm’s market position
Website architecture, functionality, and design
Law firms like their ampersands. Yet firm names often are meaningless except by reputation. And their ampersands are meaningless too. But when Cyto changed Harmon, Curran’s ampersand to a plus sign, a perfunctory symbol was transformed into a mark that stands for inclusion and positive energy.
Given the amount of written communication generated by a law practice, the design of the firm’s stationery needed to represent an integration of professionalism and innovative thinking.
HCS+E is not an undifferentiated law firm. Their progressive, mission-driven staff and point of view suggested a dynamic, intimate, personable design was the way to bring those differences to life.
Departments of Public Works & Public Utilities Cyto’s work with the departments of public works and other water utilities including Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, and the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority, bear a curious parallel to employee communications: the stakes are high for everyone involved. Cyto provides public information and outreach services to utilities as they implement major capital projects with significant impacts on the community. Communication begins with civic leaders and proceeds through substantive, technical discussions with engaged, informed, and often animated citizens.
Meetings with top public officials, civic leaders, and citizens are supported by technical documents, PowerPoint presentations, and remarks that are both technical and sensitive. As with Baltimore City’s implementation of an EPA mandate to cover finished-water reservoirs, there are seldom simple answers to issues arising from conflicting mandates and conflicting interests.
Recruiting and retaining quality employees is a challenge for every company. But that challenge is always greater when you have contract employees dispersed throughout the country. The nation’s leading provider of school-based Speech-Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, and Physical Therapists, Progressus found that many of its employees identified more with the school to which they were assigned than they did to Progressus. The business impact: costly employee retention challenges. Working with Progressus’ senior management, Cyto developed:
The Progressus internal and external brand attributes
New employee benefits and professional development programs
A branded, web-based program designed to enhance and strengthen the employment experience
Content and design for a new corporate website
Cyto developed and branded The Progressus Experience, a multi-faceted program structured around the employee lifecycle and designed to strengthen the employer/employee relationship.
Cyto designed a Progressus Experience web-based portal that provided employees with multiple resources and benefits.
Once Cyto began defining the Progressus workplace and marketplace brands, it became clear that a redesigned logo and new tagline could more effectively project the many opportunities Progressus makes available to clinicians, students, parents, and schools.
Through the inventive use of the sloping horizon, even Progressus’ stationery is imbued with energy and a bit of whimsy.
The bold use of the logo mark on the floor-standing tradeshow display captures attention, while the table-top display features photography and information specific to various types of clinicians.
One way Cyto added personality to the Progressus brand was through a more imaginative use of a photo/narrative pairing. The image/phrase combinations rotate, speaking to current and potential employees, parents, and school officials.
Cyto designed and wrote collateral materials that incorporate a refreshing color palette, the circle motif from The Progressus Experience, and a bit of play with the headline type.
For collateral specifically targeted to potential employees, Cyto wrote and designed a double gate-fold brochure that speaks directly to the prospect with warmth and candor.
With an improved online application process, Cyto was free to create recruitment advertising that connected emotionally and helped drive traffic to the Progressus Web site.
Laureate International Universities Like a lot of successful businesses, Laureate International Universities began with a restless entrepreneur challenging the conventional wisdom. The entrepreneur was Doug Becker and the challenge was to bring affordable, quality, higher education to the world’s growing middle class through a global network of for-profit colleges and universities. Just that would have been difficult. So Mr. Becker upped the challenge by insisting that acquired institutions directly address their market’s workforce needs. Laureate’s success has brought with it still more challenges, such as how to effectively communicate with Laureate International Universities leaders from 40+ institutions in 20+ countries. Cyto’s first challenge was to help transform Laureate’s annual leaders’ conference. Today, the Laureate Leadership Summit fosters networking, increases the flow of ideas, brings consistency and clarity to meeting content, and strengthens the bonds between people from all over the world. Here are some of the ways Cyto contributed:
Designed a pre-event Web site
Streamlined and automated pre-event registration
Cyto’s first step in improving Laureate’s Leadership Summit was to develop this pre-event Web site. It streamlined the registration process, provided attendees event information, and signaled a more focused event agenda.
Reflecting the company’s newly privatized corporate ownership, the event theme challenged attendees to “Imagine what we can do from here…” And no branding opportunity was missed.
In order to bring greater consistency to myriad event presentations, Cyto designed a versatile suite of PowerPoint slide templates and made them – along with guidelines for better presentation techniques – available for download from the pre-event Web site.
Cyto took its own guidelines to heart when working with Laureate’s senior management team to develop presentation structure, content, slide designs, and delivery techniques.
Images can inspire, energize, and add depth to an idea. They also can transcend language barriers and bring diverse people closer together. And they do this brilliantly when they’re simple, powerful, evocative, and nearly eight feet tall.
Cyto believes that everything is media. So when circumstances provided us the challenge of turning a former auto repair facility – a garage –into a hip nightclub, we transformed the cavernous interior to reinforce the event’s theme, foster networking, and give attendees a reason to dance.
One of the ways Cyto helped Laureate increase the ROI on their Leadership Summit was to create a content-rich post-event Web site through which attendees could download presentations, documents, and photos, stream video from the event, find participants’ bios, as well as participate in and review results of an attendee survey.
Year over year improvement is Cyto’s goal for every aspect of Laureate’s Leadership Summit. So our 2008 pre-event Web site design included the addition of Cvent registration and survey technology, richer content for travel and event preparation, and suggestions of how attendees might get in touch with their inner rock star for an evening at Hard Rock Live in Orlando.
The challenge with any event theme is to transform it from a phrase to a source of inspiration, understanding, and, ideally, valued behaviors. In this case, Cyto would highlight the interplay between passion and performance.
While passion possesses the depth and complexity of human emotion, performance is all about clarity, confidence, and action. So to illustrate the blend of those distinctions, Cyto provided presenters with PowerPoint templates featuring a rich palette of colors and textures, underlying a simple content grid.
After writing and designing a handful of senior executives’ presentations in 2007, Cyto’s role expanded to include the crafting of over 15 major presentations by executives from every Laureate business unit.
No matter what the endeavor, knowledge and skill give rise to performance when ignited by passion. Cyto wrote and designed huge displays to bring this idea to life.
Keeping people informed, focused, and inspired are among the primary roles of graphic design. Cyto used design to visually brand each activity, so that participants were drawn and directed to the information that mattered most.
Trust is the currency of all meaningful relationships. The trust that Cyto has built with Laureate’s leadership team has grown such that Cyto now leads all aspects of Laureate’s Leadership Summit, from the look and timing of fireworks displays, the theme and décor for off-site entertainment venues, to the design and logistics of an array of team-building activities.
A persistent challenge of multi-day events is to capture not only what happens, but how it feels to be there and participate. Given the scope of Laureate’s event (from “be your own rock star” at Hard Rock Live to a dozen team-building activities spread out over a 400 acre resort), Cyto chose to shoot video and still imagery of every aspect of the event and edit it down to an energetic, emotionally uplifting video to crown the grand finale – a gala awards dinner.
The richer the content and experience, the richer the post-event Web site must be. So Cyto designed a site that featured streams of all video content, downloads of each presentation, profiles of special guest speakers, attendee bios, and photo galleries from the entire event.
We hope you’ve enjoyed your “tour” of Cyto’s process and work product. We strive for the simplicity on the far side of complexity, so that your internal communications efforts are clear, realistic, and effective. By integrating our strategic insight with creative execution, Cyto is uniquely qualified to help leaders meet challenges with solutions that make sense, make efficient use of resources and, above all, make a difference. That’s how we help you
Cyto Communications LLC 5457 Twin Knolls Road, Suite 101 Columbia MD 21045-3263 443.542.5822 P 443.542.5823 F email@example.com cytocommunications.com