15 de fevereiro de 2023

Is it the end of Internal Communication?

Originally published on LinkedIn on February 06, 2023

Before you feel overwhelmed, take a deep breath.

The question is about Internal Communication as the very name of an organizational structure. I will not deal with Internal Communication as a professional function here – this will hold for another moment.

In recent years we have been witnessing an expansion of the challenges under the IC area’s responsibility. Diversity & Inclusion, Employer Brand, Change Management, Culture, Endomarketing, Engagement, and Employee Experience are some challenges the former Internal Communication area is taking on.

And why does this happen? Obvious answer: Society has changed, the demand of organizations has changed, and communication professionals must keep up with these transformations.

In addition to the content that has been expanded, we also witnessed changes in formats – text, sound, image, social media, interactive digital models, applications, and, more than anything, experience, relationship, and management.

And this movement is happening in several parts of organizations. We observed significant changes in People Management, which one day was a Personal Department, which migrated to the Human Resources department and is currently called People & Management or People department in several companies.

These changes go far beyond naming. They are transformations of purpose, objective, and management models to meet the expectations of people and the needs of the organization and the market.

Another movement I realize is that Internal Communication has been increasingly going beyond internal borders and taking on social media to attract talent, connecting with candidates who are often also brand customers. It is necessary to reflect if it is time to change.

Comparing with other areas of an organization, there was a change from Customer Service to Customer Relationship. More recently, it has become sophisticated for Customer Experience until it reaches Customer Success. In some places, it is called Customer Enchantment.

It is a ladder of values. First step: The company serves (reaction). Second step: The company relates (interaction). Third step: The company generates experiences (interaction with purpose). Fourth step: The company cares about customer success (a proposition with empathy). Fifth step: The stage of enchantment starts (innovation).

My experience as a professor of metrics and as a consultant in communication points out that most professionals aim to engage employees. If this is the challenge, what would be the ladder of values?

For us at Indicafix, the first step is information, knowing how they consume internal channels. The second step is understanding, that is, the ability to grasp a message. The third step is the connection step, when the employee identifies with the message, whether the purpose, the product, or the company as a whole. The fourth step is motivation, when the employee participates, leaders mobilize teams, and challenges are achieved. And finally, the fifth and final step in this journey is engagement, which translates into adherence to the complete package of Purpose, Strategy, and Values.

A highly engaged person believes in the organization and its values, dedicates themselves to meeting the goals, and nurtures the internal content, influencing their network of internal and external contacts.

With so much to do with such incredible goals, does the name Internal Communication fit the size of the challenges that professionals face? In your company, has the change already happened? What does the area is called today? Please share it with us.

SUZEL FIGUEIREDO – President of Ideafix Research & Intelligence Corporate and cofounder of Indicafix – startup of metrics in Internal Communication. Guest Professor at GESTCORP/USP and the Strategic Communication MBA at UFBA. For more than 20 years, she has been a Professor in research courses and the ABERJE’s MBA. Winner of the ABERJE Trajectory of the Year Award 2020 and candidate for the EY Winning Women Program in 2020.

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