Measuring employee communications: How to find out if you’re reaching them

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What You’ll Learn:: 

What if people in the company headquarters devour your communications, while those in branch offices yawn?

Can you determine whether long-term employees have a different take on executive messages than new hires?

And how effective are your communications overall?

Dig deep into these and other vital questions in Shel Holtz’s training module. You’ll learn:

  • Why you should assess your internal communications
  • The 7 steps to a communications audit
  • The essentials about surveys, polls and other forms of research
  • How a trend survey can help get the desired result in employees (a behavior change)

Tempted to shrug off all this? Don’t. Shel recalls one of his early jobs as a consultant, when he suggested a survey.

His contact at the company crossed her arms and said, “We’re perfectly capable of telling you what our employees think.”

Don’t be so sure. Assessing and measuring your communications will teach you things you never imagined about your organization.

Wouldn’t you want to know about simmering resentment about the corporate jets during layoffs? HP did, and it published an article explaining that its executives flew commercial; the purpose of the jets was to get engineers quickly to major clients to deal with problems.

Shel walks you through how to measure, and gives you the tools for doing so.

Find how to use the International Association of Business Communicators’ scoring method to evaluate contest entries and other submissions. If you’re honest with yourself, you can use the same method to score your blogs, publications, and articles—and see how effective they are.

This training module gets down to specifics. He describes how one company couldn’t get employees to read well written articles on its intranet. It turned out all the corporate-oriented topics bored employees in branch locations. This allowed the company to adjust in two ways: they made the corporate stories more relevant, and they began featuring local topics.

Learn why you need an outsider to do a full communications audit—but how you can still use some elements of that audit to test yourself.

Find out how you can use quantitative research tools such as polling. Shel explains how polls differ from surveys, and why they can help you track changes, even if when they aren’t statistically valid. Discover why even the seemingly subjective measurement tool of employee interviews also provides hard data.

Dig into the steps to modify employee behavior, and find out how logistics applies to communications.

Shel takes apart how surveys work, from questions to data results. You’ll find out why surveys and measurement data don’t stop with a dump of numbers.

And he tells how to craft a story around the numbers by calling out the revelations that  have the biggest effect on the organization.

Updated: 
May 2012
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Presenter bio: 

Shel Holtz is principal of Holtz Communication + Technology, which advises companies on their digital and traditional communication strategies. He is a seven-time winner of IABC's international Gold Quill award. The author of six books, Holtz also is a long-time blogger and pioneer podcaster. His clients have included Intel, Sears, PepsiCo, General Mills, The World Bank, Disney, FedEx, and National Geographic.