Internal Communications

By Andrew Holland A version of this blog post was written for the Institute of Internal Communications (IoIC) #IChoseIC series, where internal communications professionals share how their IC careers started and have evolved. Seize the opportunity I remember the day I discovered Internal Communications like it was yesterday. It was 7pm and I’d been at work for about 12 hours having started on the early shift. This was in a call centre for a well-known utility and I’d recently been promoted to call centre team leader. I read the job advert for an Internal Communications Assistant and it jumped out at me. It described everything I wanted to do. I successfully applied and started a 25-year career in Internal Communications, which has been rewarding at every turn! In that first IC role, I had two inspirational leaders who really helped me establish my IC credentials. The first was my manager, who was incredibly supportive, extremely...

Don't sweat the small stuff This week I’ve been interviewing candidates on Zoom. So far, so normal. I’ve worked from home for five years and although I’d rather be out and about meeting people face to face, location and schedules often necessitate video calls. However, like most people in the communications community, I’m now juggling the multiple responsibilities of home-working, home-schooling and feeding four people instead of one. Whereas before I would have been able to talk to you from a quiet home office, that space is in high demand, so instead I will be in my kitchen. Look closely and you’ll see a pile of washing up in the background, a dog scratching at the back door, and despite my best efforts to keep them away, one or more hungry boys/men tiptoeing around behind me. The point is I understand what it’s like. Job hunting is stressful at the best of times...

These are unusual times. Yesterday the Prime Minister announced unprecedented measures to keep us all safe and to keep the NHS running. I hope that your employer has taken the responsible step of sending you home. In which case, many of you will be busy managing Coronovirus communications for your stakeholders and colleagues. You may also be juggling the joint challenges of working remotely, and home-schooling or entertaining your kids. Comms Leaders has always been an agile business, so although we’d rather be out and about meeting people, we are completely set up for home-working, with or without pets, kids, partners in self-isolation etc. Like everyone, we are concerned about the effect this virus will have on the health and finances of our families, friends and all our clients and candidates. We are here if you need us. Whether you would like a review of your CV or LinkedIn profile, to benchmark...

By Belinda Gannaway, Strategy Director at FathomXP The rise of EX - Employee Experience It's 30 years since the experience economy started to gain attention. But it’s taken a while for the thinking around experience and employees to collide. EX only really arrived on the scene as a way of thinking about people in the business about five years ago. But collided they have. Some 84% of HR and business leaders say EX is important or very important – but only 9% say they are ready to address this issue (Deloitte 2019 Human Capital Trends Report). What is the role of internal comms in EX? To answer that, I’m borrowing a framework from the world of service design. Imagine a theatre: The stage is where the action is happening. Internal comms has a lot of front of stage action – channels, content, campaigns, events etc. Backstage are the support processes that produce the front stage experience: the...

By Dr Domna Lazidou, culture and communication expert   An interesting approach to customer service During a recent work trip to Switzerland, I stayed at a small friendly hotel in a picturesque town by Lake Geneva. While there I had to borrow a plug adaptor from the concierge which I forgot to return, assuming, when I later discovered it in my luggage, that the hotel would simply charge me for the mistake. What I did not expect was that a very strict, official email would be sent to my client (who had booked the hotel for me), accusing me of stealing the plug and demanding that I returned it immediately or they would charge me. My client joked that I had better comply before the Interpol knocked on my door! I was mortified, but also amused: treating your customers as if they were criminals is certainly a novel approach to customer service. In reality, of...

By Mark McMahon, Senior Communications Manager at HSBC. A change of direction "Man is disturbed not by things, but the views he takes of them." Would that sentence change your life? It did for me. Ancient Stoic philosophy might not be top of everyone's reading list, but I came across this quote by Epictetus in a brilliant book called 'Happy' by Derren Brown and it had a profound effect on me. It's another way of saying, it's not the events all around us that cause us to feel a certain way, but how we choose to respond to them. Why am I telling you this? When I read it a few years ago it made me stop and think long and hard, especially about my career. It made me choose to feel differently about my role, my career path, and my potential. It made me consider the choices that were possible. It eventually made me switch...

By Piers Nutbrown, Internal Communications Channel Manager at Collinson Whatever the finer details of the future of internal communications, the shift to the employee is enduring and the onus is on us to hold their attention. In his 1888 book Glimpses of the Future (Suggestions as to the Drift of Things), David Goodman Croly supposed that one day, novels “…would all be reproduced pictorially” so “the reader’s conception of the characters would necessarily be much more vivid”. Good comms practice in any day and age. Croly’s hunches – he also envisaged the audio book and some notable geopolitical trends – have proved more prescient than other hot tips taxidermied in time. Back to the Future had hoverboards. Your grandparents had the football pools. Nostradamus, maligned for his ambiguity, at least stuck his neck out in predicting the whole world would end. And Donald Fagen, in his song IGY, recalled the pioneers who, flush...