Countdown to Christmas: Day 16

What’s the uncanny link between Finding Nemo and internal communication? Not a question I’ve ever asked!

Sarah_Perry_001But today’s brand new guest post, which is Day 16 of my Countdown to Christmas, aims to answer it. This article was written by Sarah Perry, (pictured), CEO of SnapComms.

Missed any of my Advent series? Search the Advent tag to catch up on the past couple of weeks.

My thanks to all the guest writers I’ve featured on the All Things IC blog this year. I’m looking forward to sharing many more posts from readers in 2016.

I’ll hand you over to Sarah…

The uncanny link between Finding Nemo and internal communications

As the world holds its breath for the sequel to the beloved Finding Nemo (Finding Dory is due for release mid-2016), there are some alarming similarities from the first film that apply to internal communications.

1. Face facts: staff are like Dory
Poor Dory. Short term memory loss caused all kinds of problems for her and Marlin on their quest to find his son, Nemo.

While it may sound a bit harsh, we all have Dory-like tendencies, especially when confronted with information overload. Employees forget stuff, ignore emails, overlook messages. Just because you’ve pressed ‘send’ on an email, doesn’t mean it’s actually been received, read and sunk in. Don’t take it personally.

Thankfully, there are lots of cool, new ways to get a message through to staff other than the instantly-forgettable email. Desktop alerts, interactive screensavers, scrolling screen messages and clickable pop-ups are just a few of these innovations rapidly being deployed by Internal Comms (IC) managers.

2. Don’t go near the drop-off
Despite the warnings from his father, Nemo couldn’t resist venturing beyond his homely anemone and the forbidden drop-off zone. That’s when his troubles began. The same can be said for internal communications: knowing when to draw the line.

IC practitioners are often challenged with achieving the right balance between compulsory, compliance-related comms with unexpected news or company announcements. Introduce your own boundaries or ‘drop off zone’ to help prioritise communication tasks.

A disciplined approach to frequency, format and message content will avoid reader fatigue and help you deal with the continuous requests from your senior team.

3. It’s a big, blue ocean
As the little clownfish discovered, it’s easy to get lost and confused at sea. And it’s no different at work. If you’re tasked with internal communications, knowing how to (a) reach the right people (b) at the right time (c) with the right message can be tricky.

It’s worth checking out some of the latest tools to help your message have cut through. Find out how other organizations similar to yours tackle their communications challenges. Do online research on keywords such as ‘internal communication tools’ or ‘desktop communication’, and if available, download free demos to see new employee communication software in action. There are new tools out there to help you. Use them.

4. Just keep swimming. Swimming. Swimming
One of Dory’s endearing traits was her tenacity. Nothing was going to stop her goal of reuniting Marlin with Nemo – even a smack of jellyfish and ‘nice sharks’.

Think of your internal communications’ strategy the same way.

Being goal-oriented helps to focus on what matters in the long run, minimise knee-jerk reactions and poor decisions. And just like the movie, we all want a happy ending, right?

Post author: Sarah Perry.

SnapComms is a global leader in internal communications software, serving organisations in more than 35 countries, with in excess of 1 million users. Its multi-tool platform bypasses email and guarantees delivery of messages.

Thank you for your thoughts Sarah. Want to see what to expect from Finding Dory? See the trailer online and below:

First published on the All Things IC blog 16 December 2015.

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