How to achieve an effective EVP

Producing and delivering an effective Employee Value Proposition

An Employee Value Proposition (EVP) is the agreement between the employer outlining the benefits and key features for working in the organisation and the performance and contributions expected of the employee.

EVP, Employee value proposition, Towers Watson, 10 key practices, employee survey data, total rewards strategy

An effective EVP enables organisations to stand out from its competitors, attract and retain talent and strengthen employer brand.  By integrating an

EVP that aligns the employer brand strategy with the internal and external communications plan, companies are fast recognising the cascading effect it can have.  From leadership communication to regular training and development; an open culture to attractive benefits; successful EVP’s are fast becoming key fundamentals to a company’s success.

According to Towers Watson’s latest Change and Communication Global ROI Research study:

Organisations who use their employee value proposition most effectively are five times more likely to report highly engaged employees. They are twice as likely to report achieving financial performance significantly above their peers. Organisations recorded higher performance when compared to companies that use their EVP less effectively.

“The employee value proposition is one of the best tools available for companies to engage employees, as well as attract and retain top talent,” says Richard Veal, head of Towers Watson’s Reward, Talent and Communication consulting UK practice. “Unfortunately, to many organisations, the EVP remains a hidden gem that is unshaped, overlooked or not utilised to its fullest extent. Our latest research provides important insights into what makes the best companies – those with highly effective EVPs – different.”

Making your EVP stand out from the crowd

But how can you achieve an effective employee value proposition and what are the key steps to overall success?  Here are our 4 steps for creating and implementing a company-changing EVP:

1. Collaboration

Gather a team which will enrich the EVP process and encapsulate the essence of the company as well as meeting the overall objectives.  A cross-functional team which includes marketing, communication, HR, team leaders and line managers can provide a more successful outcome.  By collaborating with different departments across a wide age range, this can shape an EVP which is more purpose-driven, achievable and sustainable.

2. Objectives

Once you have organised a unified team, ascertain the key objectives of the EVP. Define who you are as a company (vision and ethos), the services you deliver and the staff you employ. Consider what you need to succeed internally and externally and the competitive market you operate in. This will help define your overall employer brand, your brand positioning and what you need to evolve and expand in your industry.

3. Internal implementation

Your employees are your biggest ambassadors. Therefore, it is imperative that you incorporate your EVP into company inductions, reward and recognition schemes, communications and business strategies. This shows your employees that the ethos of the EVP is readily integrated throughout the company and not a pipedream.

4. Communication

Once you have created your EVP use creative channels to communicate it to the people you are trying to attract. Adapt company websites, external advertising and interview processes; this will give prospective talents an opportunity to determine if they would make a good fit for your business. Consistently communicating through branding, PR, social and marketing can help audiences develop a positive perception about the company. As a result it will add value, attract and retain talents and position your company as ‘an employer of choice’.

With an effective EVP you will have candidates fighting to work for you and employees fighting to stay with you!

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communication and engagement solutions. We inspire, motivate and transform your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information or help with creating and delivering a strategically focused EVP, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Guest Blog: Positive Onboarding Experience

A Thousand Onboarding Firsts

When was the last time you started a new job at a new company and had a positive onboarding experience? What were you thinking in the days leading up to the new job and what was your first day like? In case your ‘Dear Diary’ entries are bit vague from that time, here’s a quick refresher on some of the things that probably went through your head…

When you accepted the offer to join, you were saying yes to one of the most wonderful experiences humans have; to become a part of a group. More than just being invited to join this organisation, you were excited about the new position; the new responsibilities, the new culture and, especially, the first day. A new chapter in your life, new adventures, new challenges, people and a new place for you to prove yourself to the world. This organisation invited you to join them and it felt great.

You were also a bit nervous that you were the newbie. The outsider. You were nervous about asking questions so you didn’t appear petty, irrelevant or downright stupid. You were concerned about what you were going to wear. And you might have made a dry run to practice your commute or written down questions for your first meeting with your new boss. You might even have tried to memorise some of the names of your new teammates.  Or you might have been concerned about learning all the relevant skills needed to do your job. In summary, you were embarking on the early stages of your onboarding journey.

Four Keys to Successful Onboarding (EAST)

Regardless of the role, experience and age, everyone experiences similar challenges to some degree. The message to employers: The first day of onboarding a new hire is your opportunity to get everything right. There are four keys to make the first day one that is memorable for all the right reasons.

Make Onboarding Easy

The first day starts with getting to work. Sure, Google Maps can give directions. But as the new boss, you can lower stress for the new employee by offering insider tips. “Once you get off the train, head out of the station onto 4th Street and walk toward downtown. Enter the door under the sign that says The 421 Building and tell reception to ring me. It’s about a 7-minute walk from the train. And if you pass the bakery, you’ve gone too far!”

And make sure cultural quirks are shared to warn them. “Because of the big game, everyone will be wearing team jerseys on Monday.” Be sensitive to the fact that whatever you take for granted because you’ve been there for some time is completely unknown to your new hire. Make their welcome and first day of their onboarding experience an easy one.

Make Onboarding Attractive

Just because the new hire has decided to take the job, don’t stop selling them on how much you want them. Continue to make the onboarding experience attractive to them. Start by warming them up with a phone call the week before they start. Let them know you’re excited to have them on your team and offer up time for the new hire to ask questions.

Because we are attracted to things that are relevant to us, make sure the things that get personalised in your office are properly personalised for your newbie. Print their name on the folder of welcome documents when they walk in the door. Name tags, security credentials and any legal documents should have their name correctly filled in. Legal name on legal documents and nickname, if they prefer, on name tags and name plates. Everyone likes it when other people get their name right – don’t miss this small step to make the new job attractive to them.

As silly as it may seem, start with praise and recognition on the first day. “I know the paperwork can be a pain, but I appreciate the effort and focus you’re putting on it. You’re doing great. ”There’s no reason to be disingenuous, but don’t pass up opportunities to remind them of how you’re aware of the effort they’re putting into their first day. That will go a long way in establishing vivid memories that contribute to greater retention and enhanced referrals, when you need them.

Make Onboarding Social

Work is possibly the most significant community that we belong to because of the time we put into it over the span of our working career. That community has an impact on the new hire’s life and the newbie wants that community to accept them in return. We all want to be accepted.

Let the newbie know that he or she is accepted, welcome and that you are full of hope for their success. Thomas Jefferson’s mother supposedly said to her young son when his school expelled him for poor performance that she was proud of him; and that the teacher believed he was such an exceptional student that he needed a different class to challenge him!

Foster a support network that the newbie can rely on.  As you introduce coworkers, connect a reason for the new hire to know them. “This is Sasha, he’s great with office paperwork. And this is Gina, she’s terrific with technology issues.” The newbie is unlikely to remember all the specifics but knowing there is a supportive social network is key to getting off to a good start.

Part of the social onboarding process should include one-to-one meetings with relevant team members and associates from the organisation. Get the newbie to commit to setting up meetings with a list you provide and as they achieve those mini-milestones, be sure to recognise the effort and achievement. Small as it may be, we want the social side of our lives to work without trouble.

Make Onboarding Timely

There are certain times when we are more ready to change than others. We are more apt to reignite our gym membership when we start looking at swimsuits in the Spring. We are more apt to buy life insurance after the birth of a child. Timing matters and authors Daniel Pink in When and best-selling researcher Robert Cialdini, PhD in Pre-Suasion both emphasise the timing and sequence of events and how they impact behaviour change.

Asking your newbie on their first day for a commitment to meet with each member of the team will gain compliance. And it can be more nuanced than that. Don’t ask the newbie to commit to work objectives until they’ve got an understanding of the job. The first commitments they should make is to be learning the necessary job skills and demonstrating them in a timely fashion.

Also, how time is spent is equally important. Having big gaps in the calendar before the newbie knows how to do the job will lead to listlessness. Make sure you pack their days with relevant learning opportunities until they have a feel for the work. Then, you can more easily fill downtime with tasks from the backlog.

Easy, Attractive, Social, Timely

Onboarding, onboarding experience, easy, attractive, social, timely, Robert Cialdini, Pre-Suasion

Since our brains are not digital cameras recording every single moment humans pay attention to, and remember, the vivid extremes in life. That means that a single, small experience at the wrong time can over-influence our memories.

A study was conducted with the ostensive purpose of asking classical music critics to rate the performance of a conductor (when listening on a vinyl record). All the people in the study listened to the same recording. Some listened to perfectly clean recordings. Some listened to records that had a scratchy sound in the middle and some had a scratch at the end of the recording. At the conclusion of the listening session, the critics rated the conductor’s ability with the particular piece of music. Critics who heard the scratch at the end of the performance rated the conductor’s performance lower than the critics who heard no scratch in the recording.

Key Onboarding Tips In Summary

Be careful how you create all of the ‘firsts’ for your new hire.  Each first impression contributes to their opinion of the company and that links to their happiness on the job. It affects their emotional engagement with the company and their satisfaction with their manager.

Make their introduction to the company Easy; make their first day Attractive; leverage the Social side of their new workplace and make your communication with them Timely.

Plan ahead and help your newbies feel wanted; just like you wanted to feel when you first joined.

Tim Houlihan applies the behavioral sciences to workplace engagement and consumer behavior to corporations around the world.

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

Many thanks to Tim, Chief Behavioral Strategist, at BehaviorAlchemy for his time and insight into engaging audiences. At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire and motivate your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on successfully onboarding your new hires with, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Developing a Strategic Narrative

Leadership communication: how to develop a strategic narrative

What is a strategic narrative?

A strategic narrative is central to employee engagement.  It provides a compelling business story that explains the company background, future goals and outlines how employees can contribute to this.

Giving employees insight into the overarching aims and goals, a strategic narrative can strengthen engagement and emotional connection with the company; providing opportunity to contribute and integrate from an early stage.

Why do you need a strategic narrative?

A strategic narrative can help engage staff with long-term goals of the company.  Aligning key messages, communicating change or outlining action plans; the narrative is a unifying document from which everyone can understand what the company is trying to achieve.

But how can you ensure your narrative is effective?

An effective strategic narrative is one with a clear and compelling storyline!  Just like a bestselling book, it needs a context for the story and compelling plot, provide incentive to read and be left wanting to read more:

  • The setup: This is the reason behind the narrative; putting the story in context before it begins and explaining its purpose in simple terms. It includes key historical moments of the company, milestones met, challenges overcome and successes achieved.
  • The story: This sets out a compelling vision for the company’s future; it provides the overarching focal point and long-term goals. It encapsulates the dramatic tension audiences love to read; giving valuable insight into the company and showing how this can be improved.
  • The resolution: This offers clear direction and an action plan to achieve the goals. It is the climax of the ‘story’ where it becomes clear how employees can contribute, prioritise and help meet the company goals.

And not forgetting….

For a strategic narrative to be truly successful always keep the audience in mind when creating the narrative.  It should offer employees a platform to emotionally engage in a shared vision, align opinions and teams and be motivated to shift mindsets and transform behaviours; striving for and superseding milestones that will continuously improve the company’s performance.

Key points to include in your strategic narrative

  • Always write with your audience in mind
  • Involve key contributors from the onset
  • Outline the fundamental structure of the narrative including its purpose, direction, goals and proposed action plan
  • Consider the language, style and tone of voice of the strategic narrative
  • Provide leaders with the opportunity to personalise segments of the narrative
  • Integrate the narrative into everyday actions to keep it alive
  • Continuously measure the narrative and its impact on the intended audience

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communication and engagement solutions. We inspire, motivate and transform your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information or help with developing a strategic narrative, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Defining organisational integrity

Organisational Integrity: we hear it, we see it but do we follow it?

Organisational integrity is and should be the foundation of any working environment.  Building trust and incentivising staff to go ‘above and beyond’ is encouraged through honesty and transparency filtered through great leaders.

As a collective interpretation of individual integrity; organisational integrity guides core values, aspirations and patterns of thought and conduct among staff.  It creates an environment that encourages trust, promotes accountability and consequently, better engagement.

By integrating more robust standards, successful organisational integrity creates an environment everyone wants to be a part of and fully supports, comprehends and understands any structural, transformational changes.

The core values

But what are the core values to base a successful organisational integrity strategy on? And how can you avoid disruption to the integration and implementation of the strategy including performance management, role conflicts and ethical climates?

organisational integrity, core values, values, company culture, culture, employee engagement, accountability, responsibility

Fundamentally, the key value is trust!  Creating an organisational integrity strategy must encourage trust from the team; promote honest and transparent communication and create peer and senior led decisions based on the motto ‘do what you say you will do, truthfully and consistently with your team’.  Taking into consideration these core values will help achieve a more sustainable and operable strategy. We have put together our top core values tips to help create a culture of trust and organisational integrity based on three simple points.

Top three core values tips:

Smarter decisions: Decision-making can be an easy task.  But if you are over-committing or under-valuing expectations, respect for leaders and managers soon becomes waned and tiresome.  As a result, staff motivation starts to drop.  Making more meaningful and attainable decisions can contribute to a better engaged and trusted workforce.

Honest accountability: Composing and delivering decisions can naturally become hierarchical if not communicated effectively or coherently with the team.  Integrating decision making that responds to crisis situations or provides honest account of current problems can have a cascading effect on the mentality of the team.  Avoiding happy illusions will encourage staff to respond in the same transparent manner; it enables them to see the reality of their situation and taking responsibility for delivering results.

Open environment: Creating a more open and receptive culture within any organisation allows staff to feel supported; it encourages them to speak up as and when a situation may arise.  This leads to greater accountability and responsibility to improve, excel and promote a more effective and motivated working environment.

As employee engagement experts, Engage for Success state: ‘Trust is fundamental to high performance in a team, and high engagement in an organisation. Organisational integrity builds trust’.

Have your say

Tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

 At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communication and engagement solutions. We inspire, motivate and transform your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information or help with developing an organisational integrity strategy, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Guest blog: Culture and values – what’s it worth?

The true cost of culture and values

The vast majority of people turn up for work wanting to do a great job. But, unfortunately, many organisations manage to rapidly prevent them achieving that goal. Not intentionally of course; but unless you have a well planned on-boarding process accompanied by a welcoming culture, you are likely to fall at the first hurdle as the glow of the new job becomes tarnished by the reality of bureaucracy, process, and daily tedium. This is when a good culture supported by meaningful values can make all the difference.

It will have cost your organisation around £30,000 to find and replace that employee and in turn he or she has spent a great deal in time, energy, and probably anxiety, changing jobs or starting their first one. High expectations on both sides. So it’s not hard to see that if that family style supportive culture promised at the interviews along with the welcome talks from those important people under-deliver, there will fast be disappointment. And that can cost you dearly.

Time for a few Stats

According to the Deloitte 2017 Global Human Capital Trends Survey:

  • Organisational culture, engagement, and employee brand proposition remain top priorities in 2017; employee experience ranks as a major trend again this year.
  • Nearly 80 percent of executives rated employee experience very important (42 percent) or important (38 percent), but only 22 percent reported that their compa­nies were excellent at building a differentiated employee experience.
  • Fifty-nine percent of survey respondents reported they were not ready or only somewhat ready to address the employee experience challenge.

simply irresistible organisation model, deloitte university press

 

It’s not all that surprising that the majority of employers are poor at creating a great employee experience. Only the most enlightened business leaders can see the ROI on great culture supported by genuine values.  Most are wrapped up in issues where the payback is more tangible, easier to see and measure.

It’s time to wake up and smell the coffee

Trends show that this issue is not going away but rather becoming more important. For example, new graduates entering the workplace are no longer obsessed with just the salary and benefits package. They want to work somewhere they can share in values they believe in and a culture that supports them. And of course, if your employer’s culture is not something special, irreplaceable and distinctive, there is much less to stop you going to work somewhere else.

Worst of all is having a set of values on the website and on the walls in your meeting rooms which are largely unknown by the employees (can you recite your Company Values?), and not put into practice by management. Better to have none than to openly demonstrate ignorance or hypocrisy.

And it’s easier than ever today to find out what it’s really like working somewhere. Tools such as Glassdoor and Facebook make it very easy to see reality as opposed to what they want you to see on the website!

Every organisation should strive to be unique, even if the products and services are scarcely differentiated from competitors. In fact in this case it’s even more important. Don’t forget that your culture will shine through to customers, prospective customers, prospective employees, suppliers and everyone you deal with. It’s what makes you different. Culture often emanates from the original founder, even if they are no longer around. It’s that hard-to-describe essence that makes your place the place it is. By creating a timeless set of Values, you can capture that essence and use it make your organisation special, different and great.

Expensive if you get it wrong, valuable if you get it right

Even if you find it hard to see the tangible benefits, the costs associated with getting it wrong (poor culture, no values or redundant values) are likely to be immense:

  • Higher staff turnover @ £30,000 per head
  • Less motivated employees, less likely to go the extra mile
  • Unsustainable customer satisfaction – if your employees are not engaged, your customers will feel this in their interactions and will be less loyal to you. Your business could die.

Try putting a price on each of these for your organisation.

Every organisation has a culture whether you like it or not. Might as well use it positively, supported by a tangible set of values, to help engage employees and customers in a sustainable way.

At amp Performance Limited, we help both public and private organisations by developing performance improvement solutions through Motivation and Incentives. We help answer people and business questions. We do this by providing services across Communication, Education, Measurement and Reward. Visit us at www.ampperformance.co.uk

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

Many thanks to Adam Sidbury, Director, at ampPerformance for his time and insight into the true cost of organisational culture and values. At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire, motivate and transform your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on developing a well-planned on-boarding process and welcoming culture, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Guest blog: Engage and stop chasing demographic unicorns

Engage with diverse workforces

Are you stressed about trying to engage your diverse workforce? Going crazy trying to engage millennials in your office?

You’re probably overwhelmed by articles and blog posts telling you how to communicate with your workforce by age, ethnicity and gender. Frankly, it’s unworkable.

The fact is people are complex and the psychological underpinnings that lead employees to engage with a firm morph with both time and situations. Engagement is daunting. That’s why you need a different model – a new way of thinking about engaging your diverse workforce.

Stop chasing demographic unicorns.

The 4 Drive Model

The 4 Drive Model (originally created by Lawrence & Nohria) is a comprehensive framework for understanding employee motivation at its root. The 4-Drive Model satisfies a wide variety of engagement issues with a single approach. This way, you can engage your 26-year-old white female as easily as the 45-year-old Asian male.

engage, 4-Drive Model, ClearVoice, engagement, audience, demographics, diversity, diverse audiences, employee

#1: Acquire & Achieve. The first set reflects our drives to acquire things, status, experiences, rewards, etc. and is a common foundation for all engagement plans. Intuitively, you can peg millennials with their drive to acquire and achieve, but hold your horses. They’re not the only ones. We live in a consumer-driven world. Your millennials and your 50-something coworkers received Apple watches for holiday gifts (maybe even from themselves).

Kurt Nelson, PhD, President of The Lantern Group, applies a version of the 4 Drive Model to engagement strategies. He noted recently that “The standard ‘pay them more and get more performance’ mantra doesn’t work anymore. A written letter of appreciation can generate more engagement than a big check.”

#2: Bond & Belong. We have a drive to create positive relationships and engage with others to fit in as social beings. In this way, we are satisfying our desire to bond and belong. This drive transcends age, gender and ethnicity and has more to do with what’s happening in the careers of your employees and changes in their environment. In every new setting, the subconscious mind demands satisfaction to bond and belong, to fit in and for the tribe to recognise achievements.

The modern workforce exists not so much as individual contributors but as dynamic participants in a web of teams. As Nelson noted, “Successful leaders look for opportunities for their people to interact and form social connections.”

#3: Create & Challenge. These drives are about our need to create, improve, master, learn and overcome challenges. People commonly overlook this when considering what engages employees. An assignment with tremendous challenges can contain more motivational power than an average assignment with a big bonus. As historian Jacob Bronowski said, ‘We delight in our own creativity,’ so give an employee something to create and watch them run.

That said, it’s more than just having a challenge in a job. It’s also about expanding the cognitive abilities that allow us to succeed. “To maximize performance,” said Nelson, “make sure that there are regular opportunities or even requirements to engage employees in learning.”

#4: Define & Defend. Defining our purpose and defending our status, ideas and relationships. How we identify ourselves has immense motivational power. While saving-face is one such reactive aspect, the proactive side is staking a claim and enabling employees to raise a flag on their own battlements. These drives serve those who have clear visions of their purpose and goals in the organization.

“Employees will fight long and hard for a company that they believe in and one that has their back,” says Nelson.  This is truly the ultimate gift an employee can give a company when their environment supports it “but the moment they sense deceit or feel belittled, those same employees can turn into your biggest liability.”

Applying The 4 Drive Model

Dr. Nelson recently leveraged the 4 Drive Model with a global pharmaceutical firm in revamping their sales incentive trips. Historically, the firm offered lavish trips for top performing employees to exotic destinations as recognition of their successes. However, the company wanted to dial down the public perception of the trips and at the same time maintain high levels of motivation among the sales reps. The result, after private interviews, team brainstorms and input from senior leaders, a menu of trips was created to allow teams to choose (bond & belong) among learning-centric trips (create & challenge) with senior leaders (acquire & achieve) that were relevant to their team’s success (define & defend).

One Isn’t Enough

Nelson noted that “an improvement in each of these drives impacts organizational performance independently” which is important for any firm. Satisfying all 4 drives simultaneously initiates “an exponential increase in performance”. By comparison, firms see a 3%-6% performance increase for satisfying any individual drive versus a 36% performance increase when all four drives are satisfied.

Chasing demographics is akin to chasing unicorns in a magical forest.  By focusing on the 4 Drives, it allows you to develop programs that address your entire audience looking at where they are at.

Tim Houlihan applies the behavioral sciences to workplace engagement and consumer behavior to corporations around the world.

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

Many thanks to Tim, Chief Behavioral Strategist, at BehaviorAlchemy for his time and insight into engaging audiences. At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire and motivate your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on engaging with diverse workforces, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Creating a risk management strategy

Risk Management Strategy

Risk management has become a critical element within most companies.  Every business faces risk. But by identifying the risks and assessing the likelihood and impact of those risks can help companies make cost-effective decisions as to the response they need to take.

This is the case for risks that have positive or negative effects on a company.  By managing the type of risks that could have the most impact can help streamline processes, organise response rates and facilitate the reactive action accordingly.

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Risk management preparation has a significant effect on the reputation of the company. By integrating a risk management strategy that weighs against the probability of it happening against the impact it could have on the company could help save companies time, costs and resources.

Below are examples of how global enterprises have succeeded or failed in risk preparation:

Central Bank: In February 2016, hackers capitalised on security weaknesses at Bangladesh’s Central Bank and used Dridex malware to hack into the Swift financial communications network stealing $101 million from accounts belonging to the central bank.  Miscommunication between the bank and its headquarters, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, at the time of the hack resulted in the disappearance of most of the money.  Clunky payment processes further contributed to the disaster.

The failure of the Bangladeshi government to build adequate safeguards for its financial system became the starting point for a global, multi-million money laundering scheme. The effect of this was felt beyond the country’s borders.

Tesco Bank: In the following November £2.5 million was stolen from 9,000 Tesco Bank customers’ accounts following a data breach.  Tesco bank was quick to apologise, refund customers and provide reassurance that personal data was not compromised in the attack.  Customers were notified of the breach by email and text messages; and kept updated via the Bank’s website and Twitter page.

Aetna: In July 2017, American managed health care company Aetna exposed the HIV statuses of 12,000 patients by dispatching letters in open window envelopes to their healthcare provider.  Immediately providers took to social media showing their support for their customers and their anger at their supplier.  Aetna subsequently advised they were considering introducing additional safeguards to prevent further incidents.

Prepare for all risks

Simultaneously, effective risk management preparation can help respond to positive risks in companies; such as an increased demand for a new product or service, introduction of new software, technology or website volume etc.  By preparing for ‘opportunities’ as well as ‘uncertainties’ you can affect relationships with customers and your position in the industry.

5 steps to a successful risk management strategy

As the need increases to develop risk management strategies which identify, assess and prepare for positive or negative impacting risks, integrating an effective risk management strategy is stronger than ever.  Fundamentally, there are three main factors to consider:

  1. the risk culture (who is directly and indirectly involved because of a risk);
  2. engagement of your team (communicating and developing an understanding of the processes involved);
  3. how you monitor and review the risks identified.

There is no all-encompassing risk management strategy. However, risk assessments and preparation processes can help to manage and deliver effective responses to positive or negative impacting risks.

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire and motivate your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on how we can help create a risk management strategy, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

 

Mental wellbeing in the workplace

Awareness of mental wellbeing

Awareness of mental wellbeing has exploded over the last year. It’s driving companies and HR teams to acknowledge, support and integrate tools which can help employees cope with stress, effectively and successfully.

.mental wellbeing, clear voice, silke brittain, employee engagement, productivity, values, culture, bedford, HR, engagement, communicationIn 2016, 15.8 million working days were lost in the UK due to mental health issues. A 2017 report claimed 60% of employees have experienced a mental health problem due to work or work was a contributing factor at some point in their career.

However, with the increase in awareness of mental wellbeing, companies are starting to understand the physical and mental state of their employees.  By using initiatives which encompass the employees’ working environment to open discussion opportunities, companies are understanding the benefits of healthier, motivated and focused staff.

But how can you support your employee’s mental wellbeing?

Supporting and encouraging positive health and mental wellbeing needs to be engrained into a company’s culture. It should not stop at the strategy development stages.  To help tackle the causes of work-related mental health problems and promote wellbeing in the workplace, Mind, a leading charity for mental health and wellbeing developed an informative step by step guide.  Focusing on the working environment, line managers and HR professionals; the guide provides a collection of informative yet useful tips in maximising your workforce’s mental wellbeing.

4 steps to support positive mental wellbeing

Here is a synopsis of the guide to help start the process of promoting mental wellbeing and supporting your staff’s mental and physical health in the workplace:

Open-door policy

Employees want to feel that they can communicate honestly and openly.  Integrating an open-door policy will help strengthen and support engagement from the onset.  Try to implement transparent communication through all platforms; helping promote and encourage staff to share and respond respectively.

Training & guidance

For an open-door policy to work it is crucial to give leaders adequate training and guidance to help support employees.  This ensures that leaders are equipped to advise employees and proactively manage work-related factors that may contribute to poor mental wellbeing. Send a clear message to your staff that their health and wellbeing matters!

Flexible hours

Flexible hours not only encourage a more dynamic working schedule but can allow for a more balanced and healthier lifestyle.  Integrate and demonstrate behaviours which encourage motivation and social support within your team through flexible schedules.  Encourage staff to work sensible hours, take full lunch breaks and recuperate after busy periods. Senior leaders should role model these positive behaviours where possible.

Don’t forget you!

Look after yourself. Always try to ensure you maintain a healthy lifestyle, access social support and develop resilient thinking.  If you can lead by example, staff will soon follow and adapt.

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

At ClearVoice, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire and motivate your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on developing a mental health and wellbeing strategy, call or email us today and let us show you how a happy and healthy workforce can boost your organisation.

Change Management: strategic direction and implementation

Why you need a change management strategy

Developing a change management strategy can provide direction and purpose for change management plans. They help determine fundamental processes for significant changes within the workforce.

However, key events or processes can affect how they are developed and integrated for the strategy to be successful. From mergers and acquisitions, intranet systems to relocations, product launches to leadership changes; ultimately, change management strategies need to reflect the cause that can create the biggest disruption to a company.

Qtel’s change management through M&A

In 2005, Qatar, the world’s richest economy, per capita, faced one of the most ambitious acquisition sprees in acquisition history. Its state-owned telecom company Qtel went on an acquisition spree and by 2012, Qtel owned 17 telecoms operators in the Muslim world and had become the world’s fastest growing telecoms operator by revenue.

In 2012, Qtel shifted its strategy away from growth through acquisition towards growth through integration. The Chairman and CEO merged their diverse telecoms brands into one mega-brand, Ooredoo. Their objective: to provide transformational change in the telecoms sector. They realigned their strategy and purpose for change:

case study, change management, ClearVoice, communication strategy, communication, company culture, customer journey, digital engagement, digital evolution, digital maturity, digital strategy, employee advocate, employee communication, employee engagement, employee experience, employee journey mapping, employee journey, employee retention, employee value proposition, employee voice, employer brand, Engage for Success, engaging managers, EVP, financial services, focus groups, four pillars, healthcare, HR communication, HR, human resources, innovation, Institute of Internal Communication, integrity, internal communication, IOIC, M&A, manufacturing, merger and acquisition, motivation, on-boarding, people, performance improvement, pharmaceutical, productivity, recognition, research, retail, reward, Silke Brittain, strategic narrative, strategy, talent acquisition, trust, values, well-being,The change management teams set out to identify what they wanted their brand to stand for. They defined a series of unique branding propositions that would, ultimately, give them standout recognition.

They wanted to offer the Muslim world greater freedom of communication and choice; and they wanted to help rural communities and women, gain a voice. They wanted to change their world for the better.

In February 2013, they launched a new global brand Ooredoo from a standing start in a matter of weeks in Qatar, with the iconic footballer Lionel Messi introduced by the Chairman as the global brand ambassador. It was a stunning success, gaining market share within weeks. With a customer base of more than 95 million people in 17 countries, Ooredoo rapidly became a leading international brand.

Successful change management techniques

For a change management strategy to be successful, it must include the unique characteristics of the change, an action plan for implementing the strategy and highlight any potential risks which could emerge from the change.

Some of the questions you may need to answer when developing a change management plan include:

  • How big is the change?
  • Who will it affect and how many people will it affect?
  • What are you changing and what are the proposed timeframes?
  • How did you implement change previously?
  • How will you communicate the change?
  • What are the potential risks of the change and how can you manage those risks?

Implementing a big change within a company can have dire consequences on the company if not communicated efficiently and coherently. Below are key areas to focus on that can fundamentally shape and deliver your change management strategy:

Purpose of change

Outline why change is necessary and the impact it can have on the whole company. Consider what the change is, the purpose of the change and identifying the pros and cons of the change. This will create key objectives for the change which can then be fed into the overall change management strategy.

Historical approaches

This is a great opportunity to find out how the company has managed change in the past; looking at strengths and weaknesses of the delivery and how it can be improved in this latest change.  Don’t forget to consider your audience and the communication channels through which you’ll share the change in all aspects of the strategic plans.

Audience impact

The focus for all change management strategies is how to deliver the plan to the required audiences. Consider who the change will affect and how you can communicate the change to them, their peers and their leaders to ensure a smooth execution of the change.  The key is to integrate honesty and transparency through all communication platforms every step of the way.

Support team

Ascertaining a change management team will help determine who can deliver the change; who will support the deliverer and who has overarching responsibility for implementing change. Assign specific roles to team members in order to give your change management plan a clear focus and directive.

Once you have defined your change management team, the objectives of the change and techniques which could be used to implement change; you are almost ready to formulate a strategic focused plan.

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At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire and motivate your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on how to develop and integrate a successful change management plan, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.

Culture change: the role of HR

Why you need HR to drive culture change

Culture is significantly affecting how companies operate internally and externally, how they innovate and service their customers. According to Deloitte’s latest report issued at the end of last year, “82 percent of global CEO’s and HR leaders believe that culture has a potential competitive advantage, with only 19 percent believing they have the right culture.”

Unfortunately, many companies face the challenge of how to measure, monitor and manage culture change. Equally important, they do not understand ‘who’ should be interjecting those changes within the workforce.

So, who is responsible for culture change and what significance can it have on a company?

Driving culture change in the workplace

Positive implementation of culture change is the responsibility of senior leaders and the collaboration of HR departments. Senior leaders set the tone for culture through every plan, decision and action executed. They become the drivers for policies, procedures, incentives and strategy implementations. They also help HR teams to integrate and inject change from the top right down to every employee.

Senior leaders communicate culture change with those who communicate in a language employees understand.

Collaboration and communication is vital for positive culture change

It is this transparent and collective methodology which has revolutionised how employees behave and perform in companies like Twitter and Google.

Twitter clearly communicates company goals and overall objectives to its employees. As a result, they have motivated employees who enjoy the team-orientated environment and incentives. From free meals at their head office to free yoga classes and unlimited holidays for some; Twitter employees have their fair share to tweet about!

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In both companies, employees love working with their colleagues, enjoy being part of an organisation in the knowledge that what they do matters; and there is a collaborative  feeling and understanding that everyone stays until the work is done.

But how do HR teams affect culture change?

HR teams are key players when creating and delivering culture change. An inspiring and engaging culture requires constant attention from senior leaders. However, it is HR who have the power to shape, influence and communicate culture changes to employees.

Fundamentally, HR departments are the backbone which unites all staff, particularly in larger workforces. With their finger firmly on the pulse when it comes to employee perceptions, HR departments not only help create change but can help leaders deliver change effectively and strategically. They are the vital component in delivering employee feedback which can have an underlining effect on what culture changes are needed in the company.

Most importantly, HR departments are a constant and gentle reminder that the company needs culture change. It is their drive and determination which helps senior leaders successfully implement and integrate change into the workforce.

Have your say and tweet us @ClearVoiceComms

At ClearVoice™, we are experts in delivering employee communications and engagement solutions. We inspire and motivate your workforce to increase your company’s productivity and profits. For more information on how to integrate culture change within your workforce, call or email us today and let us show you how engagement can boost your organisation.