Communicating in

This past week I was in Ottawa, taking part in a Federated Press conference on internal communications. (I was inside mostly so I missed the political fireworks on the Hill.)

My talk featured a case study about a company that used a major transition as an opportunity to engage employees in a way it hadn’t done before. And a number of the key points I discussed were also highlighted by other presenters, including:

  • Transparency – you’ve got to be upfront about both good and bad news
  • Credibility – if you’re not honest or, even if you’re perceived as not being honest, you’ll never earn anyone’s trust
  • Two-way communications – can build solid relationships between management and employees
  • Consistency – in your behaviour
  • Long-term commitment – none of this happens with one message blast; communicate early and often

These are similar to the strategies we use online. But more than that, I think they’re fundamental to any effective (and ethical) communications program – regardless of the medium.

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