Welcome to the CIPR Fresh event. Today’s speaker is Dean Russell, a Director at Fleishman-Hillard who leads their UK Digital Practice. Dean will be discussing the role social media can play in Internal Communications.
Before we start – lets look at 3 broad principles for this presentation and social media in general...
Firstly– social media might not be right for your organisation – but it shouldn’t be discounted unless you have looked into it
Secondly –twitter is not a strategy! Just because you have set up a presence on a channel is not the same as having a proper strategy for how you will use it, resource it, maximise it and importantly integrate it into wider activities...
Thirdly – remember - some people really won’t care or may not want to engage in social media activities – that doesn’t mean you are doing the wrong thing – it just means you need to make sure you take it into account and plan for both the enthusiastic and the apathetic user.
So what are we going to cover today? Broadly we will be looking at What has changed, How do you unlock your organisation and Where do you go from here...
Firstly then – what has changed?
The challenge however, is even in the workplace we are constantly bombarded by media, messages and colleagues vying for our attention. Nevermind our actual jobs. So adding in extra tools for communicating at work can sometimes seem like a further threat to our ability to deliver our work. This is why it is important to really understand the challenges facing resources and what will genuinely help them in their role.
Furthermore, just like in the external world, there will be some people who are more influential than others. They might be hierarchical e.g. The C-Suite or social e.g. Social organisers within the organisation. It is important to factor these individuals into the plan – as they can help support roll-out of any new tools or features if you have their backing.This is not unlike the real world, and especially online, where we see influencers via social media have the ability to grow interest and audiences.
Furthermore – when considering online in the outside world – the role of communicators is changing. With more and more people able to comment online and provide feedback to organisations on their activities and products is leading to a shift-change in the role of comms professionals. Specifically - they are having to learn to listen. Just as Kevin Roberts notes in the slide above – the way we used to work is changing.This is no different for internal communicators too – although some could argue of all the types of PR – you have probably been at the forefront of listening! Even so, depending on the culture of your organisation – this doesn’t mean they are being heard. And social media enables a greater voice for staff which creates its own challenges as we will discuss later...
As such, there needs to be a rethink of the broadcast nature of PR and marketing generally – but also for internal comms. It is very easy to assume that crafting messages for staff and broadcasting them on the assumption they heard it correctly or are happy with it. Nowadays we have to be having conversations and enabling staff to engage with each other too – and openly.
Which is ever so important when we consider how the workplace has changed. No longer are we all trapped in offices 9 -5.30 and work only with those around us.http://www.typewritermuseum.org/_ills-library/_photos/_arc/hammond_sales_office_%20philadelphia_circa1900.jpg
For some people, the concept of the traditiojnl workplace does not exist. It is merely where they can access the internet or a phone signal.Mobile technologies are now making it possible to fit work into our daily lives wherever we may be –
Which is meaning how we work and interact with colleagues is a very different proposition – which is only going to continue to change with the onset of modern technologies such as the iPad.
Of course – with all of this change – it does mean we are all becoming perpetual students – learning and adapting to new technology and language. Which adds another layer to the internal communicator which is to support education of these technologies – not just in telling people about them – but also providing opportunities to use them in their every day roles...
Especially as the next few years come along with social media technologies increasingly integrated into our daily lives – any organisations that are not making the most of social technologies may become less appealing and risks being less efficient.
Of course, with the changes in technology – the key principles of behind a good career haven’t changed though. Just like the points in this book (Wanted – How to Become the Most Wanted Employee Around by David Freemantle) – hard work and dedication are still crucial but so are the ability to be efficient and effective which is something the organisation needs to support and sustain.
So with all this background – How do you unlock your organisation using social media.
Lets looks a several key areas starting with Networking...
When it comes to the web – there are lots of options. Lots of new tools to use. The point is understanding what works for you. So whilst social networking can be beneficial in the outside world – there are opportunities for organisations to support staff in building their own professional networks internally and externally
For example – organisations should be looking at supporting staff through some of the following types of activities:Develop and grow your networkShowcase your skillsBecome an expert or influencerAccess industry knowledgeUnderstand current trendsAttend industry social events
Perhaps one of the most valuable uses of social media internally is to increase collaboration between staff.
However – it is important to recognise people like to collaborate and contribute in different ways. For example Forrester discussed this in their Technographics research which discussed the Social Ladder of Engagement. It discussed the fact that whilst everyone may not want to contribute or create new content – this doesn’t discount the fact they might be influenced by the contributors which can be just as important.Internally – this is even more so as the challenge is getting people to engage because they might not feel comfortable in front of their peers. As such, the number of creators is likely to be less – hence the need to understand who they will be beforehand where possible and who the influencers are in the organisation so you can get them engaged.
It’s also important to think about how and why you want people to contribute. For example – for IKEA they added this excellent ‘This is Silly’ tool onto their intranet which enables any member of staff to highlight issues – however small – that might be leading to issues from inefficiencies to things that might be irritating to staff
Many organisations now use surveys using tools like Survey Monkey – which create a more managed feedback process
Tools like Yammer, which is like an enterprise version of Twitter, can be useful in sharing activities, idea and whereabouts across the organisation. Although – don’t be surprised if only a select few end up using it within your organisation initially.
And then there are ways that people can share which can generate powerful research within the enterprise. For example rolling out use of Delicious across an organisation can allow people to share links and tag content which may be relevant to clients, new opportunities, research & development and alot more – with very little effort.
There is of course another use for social media within organisations too – which is to help promote people who may be stuck away in the back office somewhere but have huge amounts of knowledge or experience which they could share across the organisation. Or even just make it easier to connect with them.Just like this Where’s Wally picture (btw – can you spot him!) – some people might be hidden in your organisation who could be extremely valuable if more visible.
Btw –here he is!!
Using digital channels can also be used to showcase the people and roles across the organisation and externally as part of recruitment. This site by microsoft provided excellent insights into the people behind the organisation – and in doing so provided a more human face whilst also showing the breadth of expertise.
And of course – there are opportunities to develop internal wikis too – collaborative areas where people can work together to create documents, policies and provide research and background information. Again though – with these tools you need to be realistic about who will actually contribute – many internal wikis die a death after just a few months because the passion to contribute fades away.
With all these shifts and changes in how organisations communicate internally and externally – there has been a slow shift in the way businesses are ran. Even though – the core principles are still the same.
So as we can see – there are 3 areas of change. Technology, Behaviour and Business models.All of which are triggered by social media in some way [examples given from the slide above]Taking this into account – now lets take a look at a traditional and well established business model by Porter (especially for those of you studying for your MBA’s in the room!)..
Take the classic Porter Value Chain model – which discussed the role of each facet in the organisation and how it contributes to margin.When we take this principle in the context of social media – you can start to identify that where social media is often seen as the domain of communications – it actually maps much deeper in the organisation that this. Lets look at a few examples (next slide)...
Importantly, social media has the opportunity to map across all facets of a business. Which is leading to a new concept of organisation called the ‘Social Business’.Just to take a few simple examples (below)...then...from an internal communications perspective this :Customer service – linking CS with Twitter to respond in real time to enquiriesCustomer Research – Facebook to see what people are really saying about your productsLogistics - sites like Amazon and eBay as a new channel for purchasing and logisticsProcurement – sites like Groupon to buy in bulk with others and save on costsInternal comms - Skype and Yammer – to improve internal communicationsRecruitment – sites like LinkedIn to find the best talent for your organisationAnd so on. Ultimately – social media used effectively should be touching most parts of a business... And organisations around the world are realising this and are being called...Furthermore – from a social business perspective – when looking at tools like Twitter and Facebook – mapping the feedback on these deeper in the organisation shifts their role from a communications channel to a customer services one. Which requires backing from across operations through to logistics. E.g. If someone complains on twitter about a damaged product due to unprofessional delivery – this cannot be handled by the communications function alone.
If we take this a step further. This means there is a shift in the role of communicators internally too. Especially in their roles.As this diagram shows – the lines between the previously clearly defined roles are now much more blurred when we take into account how social media crosses the boundaries…Which is leading to agencies – such as Fleishman-Hillard – to redefine the role we play…[next slide]
Ultimately – it is leading to a new category of communications and consultancy – which can sit comfortably across both PR and marketing…This is changing the way the business world engages with customers…This will also affect how internal communicators fit within organisations – and the role they play across the entirety of the organisation once social media is integrated throughout it.
All of this also means that those entering into communications roles are likely to have different demands on them. A survey developed 18 months ago highlighted that there are significant changes to job requirements in communications…this is only likely to change even further moving forward.
This is why, in my mind, when working on the assumption that the internet and social media in one form or another is here to stay will mean that the social business model is a necessity...Not just to help businesses remain competitive externally from a comms perspective – but in enabling internal teams across the entire organisation to become more efficient and effective. Which in turn, and as indicated through traditional models such as the Porter Value Chain, ultimately adds to the margin of the organisation.
All of this leads to a need to hire the right people.
Which is where sites such as Facebook can be powerful. For example, many organisations now set-up Facebook alumni groups and also graduate recruitment groups. Some even set-up groups specifically for graduates who will be joining an organisation in the future so they can connect with other interns and existing staff to get extra advice and understand the culture before turning up on their first day.
Of course there is LinkedIn too – which has become an incredibly powerful tool for building personal professional networks but also in recruiting people through the network.
With change comes resistance. So getting buy-in can be critical to ensure sustained success in business.
There is always a reason not to change – but in knowing what the arguments might be it is possible to counter the arguments by being prepared.
The way I look at it is like this quote “When the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills”. The point is – which are your colleagues (or clients) are building the walls and which ones are building windmills? By understanding this psychology it is easier to plan ahead and build the right arguments for the right people.
Furthermore – I would argue that buy-in could be simply broken down into 2 areas: To Allow or To DoTo Allow i.e. Do you need buy-in to gain permission to go aheadTo Do i.e. Do you need to get colleagues to buy-in to the change so that they will embrace it
For any organisation – one of the most powerful arguments for buy-in will be financial. So lets look at a (very very) simple model for monetising efficiency in an organisation.
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With all of this information – where do you go from here.
For starters – don’t be scared by it all. There is a lot to take in and we are all learning the best approaches. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes but also be sure to learn from what others have tried. Even ask people across your organisation what tools and approaches they have used in previous roles.
And don’t be overwhelmed and don’t overwhelm your teams either – talk about the benefits but don’t force them to use it. Try not to use jargon too – it is easy to turn off a CFO by twittering on about twitter. Be tangible and map benefits to the business – not just to how fun it would be to get people talking. Where possible provide training and support and show the benefits too (and don’t forget to do the same for yourself too!).
And finally - take it one step at a time –try things graduallyKnow that it will take time to fully work but if it is right people will see the benefits. Cultural change in organisations can take a long time, and when you introduce social media or any new tool – there will always be some resistance – so make sure you bring people along with you. Overcommunicate why you are doing things whilst building up to the implementation instead of just launching it with a big bang.
So to summarise...
Remember: Find the right fit for your business – your culture will be different and so be sensitive to thatDon’t force it on people – no one likes being told what to do – allow people to explore it and be clear what the benefits are for them as well as supporting them in how to use tools. Find the influencers internally – find people who have sway in the organisation so they can become ambassadorsDon’t let fear of change limit the organisation.Are far more likely to be successful in the future.
Thanks for listening!If you would like any more details or have any questions – please feel free to contact me or Fleishman-Hillard on:@firstname.lastname@example.org://london.fleishmanhillard.com
How the World of Internal Communication is Changing, Presented by Dean Russell, Fleishman-Hillard
How the World of internal communication is changing<br />Presented by:<br />Dean Russell, Director, Digital Practice<br />@dean_r<br />http://london.fleishmanhillard.com<br />(Note: Slideshare users – notes available in the speaker notes tab)<br />
#3. Some people just won’t care<br /><ul><li>http://www.pollsb.com/photos/o/31172-care_this.jpg</li></li></ul><li>What am I going to talk about?<br />#1. Whathas changed?<br />#2. How do you unlock your organisation?<br />#3. Where do you go from here…<br />
“For the first time the consumer is boss, which is fascinating, scary and terrifying because everything we used to know will no longer work”Kevin Roberts, chief executive of Saatchi & Saatchi <br />11<br />Source: hillaryjohnson.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/2008/03/26/tincantelephone.jpg<br />
What is Twitter<br />Facebook<br />Linked In etc<br />http://talentegg.ca/incubator/<br />
Develop and grow their network<br />Showcase skills<br />Become an expert or influencer<br />Access industry knowledge<br />Understand current trends<br />Attend industry social events<br />Use social to provide opportunities for staff to:<br />
10 x minutes finding information per day<br />10 minutes (per day) x 240 (approx. working days in year)<br />40 hours per year wasted (approx)<br />
10 x minutes finding information per day<br />10 minutes (per day) x 240 (approx. working days in year)<br />40 hours per year x number of employees (e.g. 100)<br />40 hours per year wasted (approx)<br />4000 hours per year wasted (approx)<br />
10 x minutes finding information per day<br />10 minutes (per day) x 325 (working days in year)<br />40 hours per year x number of employees (e.g. 100)<br />54 hours per year wasted (approx)<br />£400,000 wasted per year<br />4000 hours per year wasted (approx)<br />£<br />4000 hours x average hourly rate (e.g. £100 p/h)<br />