Over the years, I have written on trends shaping the world of work and workplaces in relation to internal communications. In this post, I will share a few predictions that can empower internal communicators as they engage stakeholders and staff at work and beyond.
– Due to the explosion of fake news and deep fake, staff are anxious and uncertain about the quality of information they receive. Even more from leaders. The CEO is expected to be the Chief Ethics Officer. There is a fear that leaders are letting organizations and staff down, leading to the growing importance of grapevine inside organizations. Employees expect leaders to be authentic, humble and grounded – traits that cannot be ingrained unless already in existence. Being genuine matters more than ever. There will be a need to establish a ‘reliable’ content or a ‘trust’ quotient for information that works its way through internal channels.
– As organizations attempt to stay relevant and keep staff engaged, the role of internal communications will become even more vital as we progress. About 70% of staff globallywill use collaborative platforms as web-based enterprise social networks and instant messaging match the growing need for learning, connectivity and growth within. With work and personal lives blending, there is a lot more need to help staff gain clarity on behaviors, tools and approaches to balance their goals. Internal communicators can connect the dots through insights-led interventions at the workplace. Gamification and personalization will increase for engagement interventions at work.
– It won’t be enough for managers and leaders to look at their business outcomes in isolation. Their communication competence will be scrutinized closely because of the pressing need to communicate effectively with staff. There continue to be gaps in how managers coach their teams. Communication is fundamental to this engagement. Two way participatory and collaborative approaches to managing internal dynamics can help managers be more effective at work and beyond. Internal communications need to be more adept with internal social listening and the value of informal channels of communication. Staff are looking to continually develop themselves and be relevant as the world evolves. There will be greater emphasis on human resource communications and empowering staff to raise their game. Displaying the organization’s internal brand to staff will be crucial – especially communicating the benefits and total rewards differentiation.
– Engaging teams through effective internal communications will gain focus. Teams in organizations are expected to be connected and yet autonomous. Therefore, effective collaborative tools and resources will be the need of the hour. Learning and communication are crucial elements of empowering teams. The more collaborative teams can be, the more successful are organizations. Even within internal communication teams – one can’t be a super-specialist in a specialist function! Knowing all parts of the domain and extending beyond the boundaries is what will bring results. Likewise, the role of internal communications will be to enhance team effectiveness and cohesion. Diversity and inclusionis emerging as a key theme in organizations as firms pitch to gain and retain their best talent.
– Improving employee experience through internal communication will be front and centre of organizational interventions. From employee engagement to performance evaluations, a consistent staff experience can lead to improved value for the business. Over 80% of employees surveyed in a global study want to grow professionally and personally. Employees need coaching on digital competence and internal communicators can grab the opportunity to help staff get stronger in this area. Need for more personal and real-time information to make effective decisions. Using people analytics for suitable communication interventions can enhance performance. Knowing your staff’s communication behaviors and channel usage patterns can improve effectiveness and impact.
Easy access to information, increased choices, demand for personal and professional development and need for leadership connection are fueling communication changes at the workplace. Staying clued in and agile to these evolving trends will give internal communicators a leg-up while strategically solving business problems.
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