While 2006 draws to a close, I wanted to leave you with some closing thoughts on trends in internal communications which seem to have impacted business in India.
From my experience and interactions with senior leadership and human resources, the following observations indicate an increased awareness of how internal communications can create value and build brands.
Local lingo: Considering the hiring frenzy in India, retention is now becoming a critical task. Business has realized that tweaking messages locally is important to have a dialogue with the audiences in India. I am aware of global campaigns ‘indianized’ and ‘local’ brand ambassadors who can relate to region specific messages. Some organizations have revisited intranets to design pages directed at engaging employees. Although I am yet to see the penetration of RSS and blogs, hopefully the new year will herald it with vigor.
Talk to me: Personalized information in the form of direct marketing with employees has come of age. Interesting, ‘in your face’ keep-sakes are generated to ‘touch’ employees at every possible opportunity. One MNC put mirrors in the corridors asking employees to get high performers like themselves! Another put messages in the washrooms goading employees to ‘ask for help’ with regard to the assistance program. Aggressive marketing techniques are used like never before. Unknowingly or knowingly, there has possibly been an information overload.
Building internal brands: There is a greater need to build internal identities and internal communicators are fighting back to keep the ‘one voice’ within organizations. More and more pressure is put on internal teams to establish a ‘brand’ for themselves and it is the responsibility of the internal communicator to provide the right perspective.
Innovation at every step: There is a demand for freshness in every activity conducted and concieved. If it has been done before, will it work again? Measurement of communications is still quite nascent. The closest measure is still around hits on the pages and number of attendees at events. Measuring organizational trust and commitment should be a priority.
So what does 2007 look like?
With the market looking up, focusing on the employee value proposition will be vital. How does your organization provide employees the right environment, the best infrastruture and training to make them stay longer and build careers?
How can you make them feel respected and rewarded? What is that you can offer which the competition can’t?
What does it take to move to the next level in the communication?
How can you help them get the right information only?
Have a wonderful New Year!