“It’s the mortar, not just the bricks that makes a building robust. The mortar in this context, is social capital: mutual reliance, an underlying sense of connectedness that builds trust.” Margeret Heffernan, Beyond Measure.
If it’s your role to deliver effective and engaging internal communications through different channels to meet internal communication strategy needs, you’ll understand how essential it is to help build employee engagement.
Equally important is making sure internal communication between individuals is optimised as well.
Building strong bonds, trust and friendship between the people in your organisation is a crucial part in the flow of communications. If you consider your messages flowing like a river throughout the business, any person you reach is a potential tributary to further spread the information.
If however your staff do not relate, they will become dams, blocking the message flow and causing a block to effective information streams.
As a first step it’s critical to ensure that the onboarding of staff is all inclusive.
The process should give new hires access to the communication sources they require, introduce them to the company history, provide detailed product information, and have training that's suitable for their role.
Those are all obvious requirements, but what people often miss is the social induction for your new hires.
How do you make them feel totally at ease with their colleagues?How do you get them to relax? How do you get them to be themselves within an office environment?
One way to do this is to host functions that give colleagues a chance to socially interact in a relaxed environment.
At RG we have a workforce that tends to be a bit younger so we decided a beer pong tournament would be a great ice breaker for new hires and veterans alike. The prize was simple –a free lunch on the company. The set-up was easy – two long tables, a pack of red cups, and plenty of ping pong balls. The result was phenomenal – never have I seen so many new relationships bond over the wins and near misses of a simple, easy-to-organise game.
It’s a very simple idea; that the social capital that can grow within your company is crucial to building an open, honest and flowing comms channel that doesn’t stop at print or digital outputs.
Open up the human communication channels available to you by creating an opportunity for individuals to relax, have fun and enjoy each other’s company.
Your new starters will love it, and will no longer be shy about speaking up once they bond with their colleagues in a social way.
Not only that but getting to know each other is critically linked to the reduction of risk found in teams which don’t communicate or trust each other.
Are you looking to maximise on the internal communications channels within your company? Simply your internal communication with SmartHub™, our employee engagement platform.
As Head of Global Engagement and Internal Communications, Catrin's main focus is to make Reward Gateway a better place to work. Using the Engagement Bridge™ model, she drives our mission, purpose and values while adding sparkle and creativity to our internal communications.