Great Brands are Built from the Inside Out
Often when talking about improving Customer Experience, organisations jump straight into brainstorming tangible ways they can reduce the customer’s pain points and make their customer’s journey more enjoyable. While this is a vital and very significant piece of the Customer Experience puzzle, first we should consider what is going on inside our organisations. Great brands, and therefore great Customer Experience, are built from the inside out.
Employee satisfaction has a direct impact on the satisfaction of your customers. Increasing employee engagement and knowledge through great Internal Communication will automatically result in a better Customer Experience at the coalface of your business.
Providing timely, accurate and relevant information to employees, especially those on the front line, results in well informed and happy staff, which has a direct flow on affect to your customers. In addition, great Internal Communication results in employees feeling more engaged and empowered, reducing turnover rates and saving the company money. Win-win, right?!
Here are a handful of tips to improve your Internal Communication and by default, your Customer Experience.
Timing is Everything
Sending communication about a company change a week after the change has occurred is an example of what not to do. Obvious, right? Unfortunately, this happens all too often in many organisations. The damage this can cause to internal culture is significant and not something to be underestimated. Timely communication is vital if you want employees to clearly understand and engage with a message. If you send it late, the focus is on your lack of organisation rather than the message itself.
Not all communication can be planned weeks in advance which means the only way to ensure communication is well thought out and timely, is to make it a priority. Everyone in the business, especially those in leadership roles, need to understand the importance of timely communication. If they don’t, your Internal Communication will always fall flat. Including communication as a regular discussion point in meetings across the business will help ensure it is at the forefront of discussions about company changes or activities.
Communicate Regularly, not just in a Crisis
There is no denying that carefully considered, timely communication is vital in times of crisis. However, it is also vital every other day of the week. Employees want to know what the company’s goals are, how the team are going to achieve these and how they can contribute. Engaged, well informed employees feel more valued, informed and have a greater sense of purpose.
Remain in Control of the Message
I’m sure we can all relate to how it feels when you find out about an important piece of company news from an external source. Employees hearing about an important business change second-hand by the water-cooler in the staffroom is all too common. Front footing conversations (even the tough ones) means we remain in control of the message and reduce the chances of the rumour mill causing misunderstandings.
Use Multiple Channels
Different people like to receive communication in different ways. Some respond well to Face to Face meetings, some prefer written communication, some don’t like words and prefer graphics instead. In addition, some people in your business might have limited access to certain channels or perhaps like many of us, their email is constantly overflowing. Where possible, leverage multiple channels to increase the likelihood of everyone receiving the message in a timely manner.
A Robust, Efficient Approval Process is a Must
In order to deliver timely communication, a robust yet short and efficient approval process is vital. If you regularly send communication that needs to be approved by others, you need to consider how long it will take to receive that approval and factor that into your timeline.
Think critically about who needs to approve a piece of communication and why. If you are constantly having to get approval from multiple people or departments, it may be worth considering whether that is because of a business need or if it is simply being done for the sake of it. Approval processes are important however you want these to be as streamlined as possible.
Collaborate with your peers and management group to determine what types of messages need to be reviewed by management versus those that don’t. You can then put processes and timelines in place to ensure approval or edits are received in a timely fashion.