While a company’s external brand perception and its business practices play a crucial role in shaping an employee’s experience, one of the biggest influencers is communication – more specifically, the way a company communicates with its employees.
Why is communication so important? Communication connects employees to the company, inspires a sense of belonging, and strengthens company culture, which, in turn, leads to higher rates of employee engagement.
Here are 3 tips on how you can increase employee engagement through communication:
1. Surveying and Using the Right Channels
For communication to be effective, companies need to ensure they’re utilizing the right channels. Companies need to use the right platforms to communicate messages to employees but also to receive feedback and input from employees to create discussion. In other words, communication should always be a two-way street. Equally important is building platforms where employees feel that their voice is heard, and their opinions valued.
With the use of the right communication channels, companies can connect and “tune-in” to their employees. Surveys are one of the most effective ways for a company to learn what their employees think and want. Surveys also enable employers to gauge employee satisfaction, employee engagement, and gain valuable insights into the employee experience. Last but not least, surveys demonstrate a company’s willingness to listen and an openness to new suggestions. This, in turn, helps to create a more open and inclusive culture.
While surveys containing pre-set responses that employees can choose from can be an effective way to gain insights, companies should aim to engage employees with surveys that include open-ended questions. This way, employees have the opportunity to express ideas, provide feedback, share opinions without restriction.
2. Knowing Your Employees' Communication Preferences
When it comes to communication channels, of course, each generation has its own preferences, which is important to know when communicating with each.
Organizations can gain a lot by knowing which platform each generation prefers, how frequent communication should be, and the type of messages that should be sent. For example, although baby-boomers have embraced new technology with the internet and the use of smartphones, in general, this generation still prefers face-to-face interactions and printed communication.
On the other hand, millennials, who grew up with the internet, are always “online”. To communicate successfully to millennials and Generation Z, companies should make use of all technology available such as Facebook, WhatsApp, LinkedIn, and SnapChat.
3. Storytelling to Engage Employees
At a time where transparency in the workplace is more important than ever, employees — especially millennials and Generation Z — demand to know and understand who they’re working for and why they should care.
Therefore, in addition to communicating company updates about policies, new hires and happenings, companies should share stories that resonate and connect with their employees.
Sharing stories is a powerful way to deepen employees’ connection to the company. Stories could include how and why the company was founded, the journey so far including trials and tribulations, success stories, stories that show vulnerability and stories that show the real people behind the company.
Do you want to read more about creating effective communication in the workplace? Download your copy of Benify’s e-book Employee Engagement: Unlocking Your Employees’ Potential now!