Overcommunicate To Increase Employee Engagement
Let’s face it, your employees have the choice right now to stay with you or to find a similar position for similar pay. A recent Forbes article revealed that in February 2021 the Achievers Workforce Institute found that 52% of employed adults were looking for a new job. Is anyone on your team currently part of that statistic? You would hope not, but how can you be so sure? Developing and maintaining a healthy, positive work environment is the only way to guarantee that your team is committed to your organization. If you have a turnover problem, you have a culture problem.
The most challenging issue that all companies face can be summarized in one word: communication. One way to guarantee that your team is engaged and satisfied is to improve the communication tools that are available. By improving communication within departments, locations, and other teams, your organization can create a world-class employee experience that people won’t want to leave.
Many issues can be solved by simply managing expectations and improving communication. In a recent article, Don’t Underestimate the Effects of Poor Communication by workforce.com:
“Sixty-five percent of employees reported that face-to-face meetings were very effective for sharing information, making them the most effective method the study examined. That means employees may feel they’re missing out on important information, even if fewer meetings and phone calls reduce wasted time and interruptions to their workflow.”
You Can’t Overcommunicate With Your Employees
This supports my theory on the current need and desire to overcommunicate with your team. Improving communication internally may initially seem frustrating when I encourage my clients to add more meetings to their already full plates. However, my clients are always pleasantly surprised about how implementing proactive communication tools allows for them to get in front of (small) issues before they turn into large fires.
Alpin Haus is a retailer of outdoor recreation products including RVs, boats, swimming pools, spas, skis and snowboards, patio furniture and grills, and snowmobiles. In addition, Alpin Haus owns and operates a fitness center with a full line of cardio and strength training equipment, hot yoga and cycling studios, group exercise classes, and personal training. Alpin Haus has approximately 275 employees across 5 locations in New York state with product lines varying by location.
While many strides have been made in the external Customer Experience, the Alpin Haus team is currently placing an emphasis on the internal Customer Experience, which is the top focus for 2021. Alpin Haus has created a consistent experience for external customers regardless of the department or location they work or shop in. Internally, they established a Communication Best Practices Guide to bridge the gap between departments and locations. Each team member is committed and accountable. Alpin Haus promotes a communication mentality: to listen and remain open while also utilizing tools and resources available. The team is trained to clarify expectations and deliver the “why” and assign ownership to each task or project.
Regularly scheduled department meetings and one-on-ones are an important piece of the implementation of proactive communication. The commitment to this has allowed for the team to regularly talk about challenges and areas of opportunity, opening the door to continuous improvement endeavors.
Alpin Haus created the Internal Communication Best Practices (ICBP) Guide and over the course of 11 weeks focused on one item each week. Each topic was discussed at all department meetings during that week, with a summary recap sent out at the end of the week to all employees. As a result of the implementation, the entire Alpin Haus team is engaged and committed to the success!
As a Customer Experience Consultant with The DiJulius Group, Jess Pischel leads clients in generating ideas, turning those ideas into systems, and then implementing and executing them enterprise wide.
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