Employee Communications in a Global Economy


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Provides an analysis of how the rise of the global economy has forced corporate communicators to shift how they communicate with employees

Published in: Business, News & Politics
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  • Employee Communications in a Global Economy

    1. 1. “ How the Global Economy has brought about changes in Employee Communications” Edelman Change and Employee Engagement
    2. 2. Is the world flatter?
    3. 3. Or is it smaller?
    4. 4. Or is it spikier?
    5. 5. A web of interconnectivity
    6. 6. The Transparent Global Economy
    7. 7. The Global Economy <ul><li>The Global Economy is an economy of : </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Change </li></ul>
    8. 8. The challenge today <ul><li>How do we reconcile the attributes of the Global </li></ul><ul><li>Economy?: </li></ul><ul><li>How do you acquire and share knowledge? </li></ul><ul><li>How do you distribute relationships? </li></ul><ul><li>How do you consume change? </li></ul>
    9. 9. Where does the Global Economy live?
    10. 10. Where does the Global Economy live?
    11. 11. Increase in tribalism
    12. 12. The rule of the Global Economy <ul><li>The speed of innovation required to maintain a </li></ul><ul><li>competitive advantage is directly proportional to the </li></ul><ul><li>rate of replication that currently exists. </li></ul><ul><li>Success in the Global Economy = </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation + Brand Value </li></ul>
    13. 13. Creating Global Employees <ul><li>A Global Employee: </li></ul><ul><li>Sees how decisions are made and what career opportunities are </li></ul><ul><li>Asks why things are the way they are and where they are headed </li></ul><ul><li>Never gives the excuse that they didn’t know </li></ul>
    14. 14. What does this mean for Employee Communications? <ul><li>The Global Economy requires us to focus on: </li></ul><ul><li>Change – We must recognize the speed and scope of communications have changed </li></ul><ul><li>Content and Relevancy – We must strive to create central, unified content and local relevancy </li></ul><ul><li>Context – We need to provide context for communications </li></ul><ul><li>Success – We need to re-evaluate what constitutes success and how it is measured </li></ul>
    15. 15. What does this mean for Employee Communicators? <ul><li>The rise of the Global Economy represents a </li></ul><ul><li>tremendous opportunity for corporate </li></ul><ul><li>communicators: </li></ul><ul><li>Marketing techniques are less effective in today’s communications environment </li></ul><ul><li>Senior executives are looking for counsel on how to implement and deploy communications strategies </li></ul>
    16. 16. <ul><li>“ As the CEO of a global organization, I realize it’s imperative that, on any given day, our employees have knowledge, understanding and access to information in order to achieve their objectives, conduct their affairs, and gain confidence in the potential of GM.” </li></ul><ul><li>— Rick Wagoner </li></ul><ul><li>CEO & Chairman </li></ul><ul><li>General Motors Corp. </li></ul>The opportunity exists
    17. 17. Working with the volume off <ul><li>Employees, who are bombarded with a constant stream of information and messages, have simply turned off the noise </li></ul><ul><li>Employees operate in an environment of “continuous-partial-attention” where individuals scan the periphery but do not focus on any one thing </li></ul><ul><li>This method of operations is based on a desire to maximize connections, which leaves little room for relationships </li></ul>
    18. 18. Change <ul><li>Communications today is about what you know </li></ul><ul><li>NOW! </li></ul><ul><li>Constant </li></ul><ul><li>Ubiquitous </li></ul><ul><li>Crosses borders and boundaries </li></ul>
    19. 19. The speed of change is not slowing <ul><li>As computing power increases, communications technology will become more flexible and inexpensive </li></ul><ul><li>The increase of voice-over-IP (VOIP) technologies will make telecommunications possible in remote locations </li></ul><ul><li>Broadband technologies and fiber-optics will allow for the greater use of audio and video material </li></ul>
    20. 20. The Digital Divide in the workforce <ul><li>Plugged-in vs. Unplugged </li></ul><ul><li>Tech savvy vs. Techphobic </li></ul><ul><li>The end communications objectives are not different for these different audiences </li></ul>
    21. 21. The implications of the Digital Divide <ul><li>Delivery of content must be relevant </li></ul><ul><li>If the organization does not provide the information, tools and access that employees want, employees will find it themselves </li></ul><ul><li>There is an opportunity to engage employees as internal ambassadors </li></ul><ul><li>It is not an excuse to say that you could not reach an employee </li></ul>
    22. 22. Employees as consumers <ul><li>Employees do not abandon personal preferences when they come to work </li></ul><ul><li>There is no cookie-cutter approach or single solution </li></ul>
    23. 23. Employees are talking <ul><li>Words and actions of employees at all levels are more transparent and come under more scrutiny </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs, e-mail, IM, forums, podcasts, social networking </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Few companies have policies in place that specifically address social media </li></ul><ul><li>Employees are unaware or do not care about the consequences of communication to stakeholders </li></ul><ul><li>Few organizations are tracking what employees are saying online </li></ul>
    24. 24. Distributed Public Relations
    25. 25. Content and Relevancy <ul><li>What are you as an organization? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you do? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you want to be? </li></ul><ul><li>What are your vision, mission and values? </li></ul><ul><li>The answers to these questions should be the foundation of everything you do and everything you communicate... </li></ul>
    26. 26. Achieving engagement <ul><li>What are we telling employees is the reason they ought to care? </li></ul><ul><li>What are we showing them that lets them know they matter? </li></ul><ul><li>Make your communications meaningful </li></ul>
    27. 27. Creating productive competition <ul><li>How do we reconcile a competitive business climate with </li></ul><ul><li>a desire for collaborative intelligence? </li></ul><ul><li>Create a two-way, conversational communications environment </li></ul><ul><li>Understand that decentralized communication does not mean silos </li></ul><ul><li>Work to develop integrated teams and facilitate discussions from all levels of an organization </li></ul><ul><li>Share successes </li></ul>
    28. 28. Context Each only tells part of the story…
    29. 29. Expectations for employees <ul><li>Corporate communicators cannot expect that </li></ul><ul><li>employees will: </li></ul><ul><li>Digest and assimilate all information that is provided </li></ul><ul><li>Ignore other sources of information </li></ul><ul><li>Communicators need to pay attention to what is </li></ul><ul><li>getting through </li></ul>
    30. 30. Awareness of conversations <ul><li>Sharing all news about the organization allows employees to see the bigger picture </li></ul><ul><li>Corporate communicators cannot ignore new social media </li></ul><ul><li>Transparency around internal decision making builds trust and establishes a culture of being in-the-know </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t let employees get lost… </li></ul>
    31. 31. Success <ul><li>Move away from strictly measuring channel use and comprehension </li></ul><ul><li>We need to measure employee communications as a driver of employee engagement </li></ul><ul><li>To get a seat at the executive table, we need to be able to demonstrate that strategic communications efforts play a meaningful role in supporting business objectives </li></ul>
    32. 32. The myth of control <ul><li>Companies no longer control the distribution of messages </li></ul><ul><li>Companies no longer control the speed and reach of communications </li></ul><ul><li>Organizations do not control the message or the brand…They never did </li></ul>
    33. 33. What is success? <ul><li>If we don’t have control, how do we measure </li></ul><ul><li>success?: </li></ul><ul><li>Success is about providing a consistent and meaningful story of what your organization is about </li></ul><ul><li>Success is about listening to others and becoming part of the conversation </li></ul><ul><li>Success is defined by discussion, dialogue and debate </li></ul><ul><li>The end goal is discretionary effort </li></ul>
    34. 34. The Global Economy as reality <ul><li>Change – We must recognize the speed and scope of communications have changed </li></ul><ul><li>Content and Relevancy – We must strive to create central, unified content and local relevancy </li></ul><ul><li>Context – We need to provide context for communications </li></ul><ul><li>Success – We need to re-evaluate what constitutes success and how it is measured </li></ul><ul><li>We need to serve as valued counselors armed with the knowledge and data to show that our strategies can and will have a real affect in terms of cost-savings, increased productivity and greater innovation </li></ul>
    35. 35. <ul><li>“ To realize the full possibilities of this economy, we must reach beyond our own borders, to shape the revolution that is tearing down barriers and building new networks among nations and individuals, and economies and cultures: globalization. It's the central reality of our time.” </li></ul><ul><li>— Bill Clinton </li></ul>