This week, I’m attending the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) World Conference. Yesterday I listened to the President and COO of Best Buy talk about internal communications. His passion for and belief in the power of communications and the importance of transparency was especially inspirational, as those are common goals at Geonetric. Two comments that intrigued me:
- There is no such thing as internal communications. It only takes a minute for that internal memo to be tweeted about or posted on Facebook – even though we add “For Internal Use Only” disclaimers. It’s naïve to think you can share one message with your employees, another with your investors, and a third with your customers. Write everything as if it will become public information, and you’ll be surprised how easily and appropriately your messages to all your audiences align.
- “Traditional corporate hierarchy and communications strategies are designed to insulate leaders.” Having your executive team actively engaged in the use of social media ensures that they hear what’s really being said by customers and employees. And having them respond openly and honestly via those same channels is far less risky than the decision to avoid a difficult or controversial issue.
Not anything earth-shatteringly new. Just a reminder that even in the largest of organizations, leaders who “get it” can choose to communicate appropriately.