Driving Results Requires More Than Channels
he following is part of our most recent publication released online, "IC in 2017 & 2018 FROM HOPE TO REALITY How Far We've Come | The Road Ahead." Looking back at their greatest hope for the IC profession in 2017 in terms of where the discipline should be, 21 communication professionals from different countries answer two questions: How far have we actually come in 2017? What remains to be done in 2018?
Jim Shaffer, Leader, The Jim Shaffer Group, shares his views on the progress made these past months, to what extent he believes his hope has translated into reality, and what remains to be done in 2018. To read the views of all contributors, download the free 42-page eBook here.
I hope internal communication professionals will take a lesson from their HR colleagues who’ve shifted their work from low value-adding personnel administration work to building their organization’s workforce capabilities. Internal communication professionals need to stop churning out activities that add little to no value and start helping their organizations improve results and value by eliminating communication breakdowns that make it tough for employees to do their work. Opportunities are huge for communication practitioners who want to play a major role in running the business.
How far we've come. Next steps.
I see some progress in this area but not as much as I hoped to see and certainly not as much as the opportunity offers. Social media is today’s bright shiny object. As with past bright shiny objects, social media is being used as a channel to distribute information rather than as a medium to drive improved business results. Social media is woefully underused for this purpose. Until communication professionals are held accountable for improving results and value they’re likely to continue to represent a cost to the business. It does not have to be this way.
CEOs and other operations people need to better understand that the way communication drives results extends far beyond formal channels. It includes what leaders say and do and what messages systems and processes (e.g., reward, measurement) communicate. Leaders who understand how their peers have improved quality, costs, safety, productivity and service delivery by improving integrated communication will want the same medicine for themselves. That “pull” has happened many times. CEOs need to be exposed to what’s doable. When that happens, results will improve. Everyone will benefit – employees, customers, communication practitioners and shareholders.
Click here to download the free 42-page eBook "IC in 2017 & 2018 FROM HOPE TO REALITY How Far We've Come | The Road Ahead."
The Jim Shaffer Group