Internal communications: The best way to warm up employees this winter

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Christmas is a distant memory, the New Year resolutions are probably already out of the window and employees have returned after Christmas; low morale is to be expected. Staff may feel demotivated especially when the next Bank Holiday is months away and the short days, dark nights and plummeting temperatures begin to take their toll.

So how do we boost staff morale and inject a little enthusiasm back into the workplace?

Barry Quinn of HR specialists Peninsula Business Services says: “Firstly, I am sure 2013 will be just as challenging as last year, and businesses – as well as employees – will need to work equally as hard as last year to stay ahead of the game. So how do we start the year on the best motivational footing?

Sit down with your team and organise a ‘start of year’ meeting. Make sure it is positive, start with a summary of what was achieved in 2012, and any lessons that can be learned from the past 12 months. Then communicate your business plans – what do you wish to achieve in 2013? Make sure employees know how they fit into your idea of success and make sure achieving it is understood to be a team effort. Employees appreciate knowing what is going on in the business and being a part of the team can give workers a boost in motivation and confidence. Do also encourage staff to come up with their own business ideas – often those at the “coal face” have the best suggestions to improve performance and make working life easier for all.

In these times of austerity, not all businesses can afford payrises, and this can also demotivate staff, especially when the
cost of living seems to be ever rising – but instead consider enticing your team with low cost incentives such as early finishes, an extra day holidays, dress down days, organising an in house staff lunch or working towards a collective
charity goal.

Do make it your New Year’s resolution to improve business communications throughout the year as well – update meetings will help drive motivation by communicating performance and addressing issues, and if done regularly, need not last more than 20 minutes – yet the benefits for both employee and the business can be highly rewarding”.

Lisa Entwistle-Evans of Evans Entwistle, agrees that internal communications are key to a successful business – although every organisation is different: “Whether you are communicating good news or bad, it is vital to take into account the target audience (e.g. all staff, managers only or just one team) as well as the organisational culture (e.g. traditional, informal) and choose the most effective communication channels. This ensures that you convey information in a way which minimises the risk of the message being misinterpreted – clear, informative and well-presented communications can often make all the difference”.

“People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing” – Dale Carnegie

  • A recent survey by a recruitment company suggested that three quarters of staff interviewed would prefer to work somewhere that fostered a fun atmosphere over one where they received better pay!! 

Peninsula is offering all Evans Entwistle clients a free HR healthcheck – contact Barry Quinn directly – barry.quinn@peninsula-uk.com – quoting Evans Entwistle or contact the Evans Entwistle office for a referral.

Getting the message across:
Consider all of the opportunities available to you to convey your message – the more innovative, the better – but do keep the message consistent if you choose multiple channels:

  1. Intranet sites
  2. Notice boards
  3. Email
  4. Posters
  5. Company conferences
  6. Business briefings
  7. Blogs
  8. Instant messaging

    And remember that communication is a two way street, so give employees channels to give feedback too!

    Suggestion boxes

    Staff surveys

    Brainstorming sessions

     

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