Tuesday October 26, 2010
Scott Mckenzie, chair of CIPR Inside, talks about an email he received from a group member questioning the need for a group dedicated to internal communications and employee engagement on the CIPR Inside blog.
Alarmed by the question, to say the least, I posted the below response. Let us or the CIPR Inside group know your thoughts…
The fact that you’ve had an email from a fellow CIPR member questioning the need for a separate internal communication and employee group is alarming.
Firstly, research clearly shows that internal communication is a distinct discipline and not only that, it will be, according to the European Communication Monitor 2009, “the second important discipline next year, right behind corporate communication”.
Secondly, internal communication is vital for organisations to undertake change successfully and the record generally on change management is not good. Change is communication. Invest in strategic internal communication that is grounded in informed employee voice and change management will improve dramatically.
Thirdly, internal communication is inextricably linked to employee engagement. And employee engagement leads to better organisational performance and better customer service.
In my experience, communicating with employees is different from communicating with other stakeholders. Some principles are the same, but employees demand more information, more honesty and expect a far greater say in what goes on. If employees are an organisation’s greatest asset, then communicating with them as adults is not an extra job, it is the job.
However, many organisations are not doing enough on internal communication. Research conducted in the UK in 2006 showed that only 32 per cent of employees feel that they are both fully/fairly well informed and also have opportunities for upward feedback.
A dedicated group that pushes the internal communication and employee engagement agenda, as CIPR Inside does, and builds bridges to other professional groups is an enlightened group that leads the way for groups within CIPR.