5 best practices for increasing engagement with your employee communications
Try new things. As the business world evolves, so must our communications. Strong engagement channels that continue to trend upward include apps, pulse polls, video, infographics and town halls. Mobile apps, for example, can boost productivity by more than 34 percent, while 9 in 10 users say work apps changed their behavior as a business professional. (Digital Strategy Consulting)
Write for the digital world. Thanks to an increasingly digitized lifestyle, a person's average attention span is eight seconds, which is shorter than the attention of a goldfish at nine seconds. (Microsoft Corp.) Whether you are creating an article for the intranet or signage for a breakroom, the goal is to keep it brief, timely and engaging. Treat headlines as advertisements, without being so clever that they're not honest about the topic people are about to read. In less than a couple of sentences, incorporate context, a call to action and where to find more information.
Be visual. Did you know that the brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than words? (3M) Also, when people hear information, they're likely to remember only 10 percent of that information three days later. However, if a relevant image is paired with that same information, people retained 65 percent of the information three days later. (John Medina, author of Brain Rules) Review content to identify information that can be communicated visually with video, infographics, etc., then write your content around the photos or illustrations you will use.
Embrace video. Eighty percent of leading companies now support a video-friendly culture where video is regarded as a natural way to communicate, and 53.6 percent of employees now expect to see video internally. (HRZone) Videos up to 2 minutes get the most engagement. (Wistia) From candid videos shots recorded and shared by employees via mobile to more formal leadership messaging, popular ways to use video include employee orientation, corporate announcements and employees celebrating great work.
Build in recognition. In your strategy, create opportunities to provide recognition to high-performing individuals and teams. Show them how they are making a difference. Recognition is the number one thing employees say their manager could give them to inspire them to produce great work – that's higher pay, promotions, autonomy or training. (O.C. Tanner). Incorporating this aspect into your planning and implementation can only make it stronger. Check out some of Spark's work in the area of recognition.
Spark Ideas is an internal communications company working to engage employees in the business. If you would like more information about Spark's work, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.