Internal Communication

Has anyone successfully implemented an internal communication guideline/strategy into their workplace and seen a vast improvement in comms especially in a global environment? Would love to hear any do’s or dont’s that people could recommend. We are growing fast and are global and are looking at challenges currently and how we can successfully keep everyone feeling connected and informed.
Thanks!

Hi Monika,

Awesome question and something I imagine many fast growing, global organisations struggle with. I am keen to hear what other companies have tried.

Communication across timezones has been a challenge for Culture Amp for years. Early on in our life as a company we opened an office in San Francisco and being an Australia based startup, we very quickly began to experience the challenges of staying connected to colleagues around the world.

We have tried a number of things while I have been here and we continue to experiment. Our employee feedback results indicate we have made some progress but still have work to do. Here are a few things I have seen us experiment with.

  1. Slack - We are heavy Slack users and generally communicate in open channels which helps people stay ambiently aware of what is going on around the world. While we have local office and team channels, we have a few channels that our executives communicate in which helps with consistent messaging across the org.
  2. Facewall - We have experimented with an internally developed product during a hackathon, ‘Facewall’, which projects pictures and brief profiles of individuals in the org on screens in offices around the world. Its a lightweight way to get to know others in the organisation
  3. Coffee chats - We use the Donut Slack app to randomly connect people around the world who do not interact much in their daily work to have a chat over coffee.
  4. All Hands - This has evolved over time as we grow but we do an All Hands meeting every 6 weeks where major initiatives in the org are communicated and new starters are welcomed.
  5. Culture Camp - Last month we experimented with getting everyone together in Australia for a week to align around the company vision, learn from each other and discover new product ideas on cross functional teams during a hackathon.

What have you tried Monika?

I would say none of these experiments have solved the problem on their own but all have done a little to chip away at the ongoing challenge of communicating across offices around the world.

Hey Josh,

Thank you so much for your reply. Really helpful!

We are pretty similar with Culture Amp in terms of what we have tried. We do donut friends, all hands and use slack a lot. We are trying to get the right balance for Slack and email at the moment and want to build in a bit more structure so people know where to find information efficiently.

Facewall sounds awesome and even better that it was internally developed. Might have to propose something similar as that sounds like a great way to keep everyone connected on what work other areas are tackling.

Thanks again for your response.

Monika

Hi Monika
Great question!
There are lots of great channels and tactics you can use to help people stay informed, however, developing an internal comms strategy is as much about why you want to communicate as what/how. Very often this has to do with making sure that everyone, all functions, at all levels, in all locations, understand how their role fits into the big picture/strategic priority of the business.
Also, as you pointed out, with a global team, it’s really important to segment your audiences. Right message, right person, right time, but you can’t do that unless you’ve got a good handle on who’s who.
Once you’re clear on all that, you can start thinking about channels, etc, and you’ll be able to approach internal comms much more strategically and efficiently.
Hope that helps!

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Some great responses here already.

I would say that there isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ for this sort of thing and it’s important to get a grasp of who the different audiences are and what works for them. Something like Slack is fab at keeping people connected and almost runs itself — it should feel like a employee channel they have control over.

Culturally, it’s important that there’s inclusion (even a perception of!) when it comes to each country. Things shouldn’t feel London-centric (for example) but strive for a more even balance across what you do and communicate. What works for one location or audience won’t necessary land in the same way elsewhere.