NON-DESK WILD WEST
5 WAYS TO ALIGN FIELD COMMUNICATIONS
If most of your internal communications are delivered digitally, via email or the intranet, then you may be leaving a large segment of your employee audience in a communications desert.
Do you know the number of your company’s employees who aren’t sitting in front of a computer? Consider all those people in the manufacturing plants and warehouses, retail locations and distribution centers, hospitals and construction sites They are quite possibly the largest percentage of your workforce, and they may see little to no communications from corporate.
To fill the gap, all sorts of home-grown field communications tend to spring up, driven by well-intentioned managers trying to keep their teams informed. But these communications are usually developed people who aren’t professional communicators. Although they’re filling a real need, it can be the Wild West out there, without the benefit of corporate support — or even brand guidelines.
Here are five ways to lasso those rogue communications:
1. TELL THE CORPORATE STORY
First make sure you’ve clearly articulated your company narrative, from vision and values to your employer brand. What is your company here to do, and how do all the divisions and departments support that mission?
2. ELECT A SHERIFF
You need someone to lay down the law on issues ranging from volume of communications to brand guidelines — but this person is also responsible for resolving conflict and building consensus across the business.
3. DECIDE WHO RIDES WHEN
You can’t run every communication at the same time without overwhelming employees. Use a communications calendar to schedule the flow of messaging — and to make sure important messages are sustained over time.
4. DEPUTIZE CONTENT MANAGERS
You’ll need people on the ground in all your non-desk audience populations to create a steady stream of fresh and relevant content. Give them the training and support they need and keep them on track with regularly scheduled meetings.
5. GIVE THEM BRANDED TEMPLATES
Provide them with the tools they need to develop communications more easily, and to keep them on brand. You can elevate the professionalism of everything from newsletters to posters with templates and how-to guides.