Humbled to have had the opportunity to share my thoughts on internal communications alongside some of the brightest minds in communications. Look up Poppulo’s article that covers trends, opportunities and challenges facing internal communicators in 2023.
As the world continues to grapple with a looming recession, rising inflation, mass layoffs, and more, internal communicators have immense challenges on hand as well as fantastic opportunities to tap into.
Just 21% of the global workforce is engaged and the degree to which HR professionals think employee experience will improve over the years (72%) doesn’t match with how staff believes it to be (38%). Also, toxic cultures are influencing the Great Resignation, and organizations need to address it swiftly.
My prediction is that in 2023, internal communicators will need to go back to the basics – especially as values, culture, and staff experiences drive employee behaviors and organizational change more than ever.
1. What began as an experimental 4-day week is now becoming mainstream. 78% of employees working the shorter week are happier and less stressed and 63% of businesses find it easier to attract and retain talent.
This will mean revisiting internal communication practices related to collaboration and connection. Also, strengthening how, when and where communication can increase efficacy for organizations to adapt to the shorter work week.
2. Bridging the gap between what staff truly want and what employers think staff want is an opportunity for internal communications to ascertain. According to a McKinsey study, staff want to be valued by their managers and organization and get a sense of belonging while employers think staff want better pay, benefits, and an emphasis on well-being.
3. This is closely linked to culture, which leaders fear is swiftly eroding in organizations with fewer in-person interactions, lesser opportunities to drive behaviors in employer workspaces, and weaker ties to the organization. Despite that 76% of staff believe culture is crucial for their job effectiveness.
4. According to a 2021 study on how organizational values influence employee behavior, employees with a clear sense of their organization’s values are more likely to perceive the organization positively.
Furthermore, employees who feel their organization reflects their values are most likely to be strong advocates for the brand on social media, which has important implications for internal communications.
In essence, in 2023 and beyond, the internal communicator will need to:
- Re-orient their focus to encourage, enable and empower staff to be involved in shaping how communication is curated and assimilated.
- Educate leaders and managers to appreciate and decode these trends in a hybrid workplace and to use communication to be more intentional in their engagement.
- Coach leaders to be more aware of their limitations and increase empathy, adaptability, and authenticity in their interactions.”