How VR can add value to internal communication

And why you too should consider introducing it into your organization

In this 45-minute webinar facilitated by Kristina Malther, Michael Neidhöfer and Andreas Ringsted discuss the value of VR in internal communications and answer your questions on the topic.

New technologies are making their way into our private and work lives. Virtual reality (VR) is no longer the realm of gamers and technology geeks alone. Instead, we see more and more marketing, communication, and education employing VR and augmented reality (AR).

With this evolution of VR we see a new, innovative and engaging communication channel emerging – but what can it do, when, and what should you use it for, and how expensive and difficult is it really? What about the ROI – is it worth it all?

Michael and Andreas will discuss the topic for 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Time: Thursday 12th December 2019, 15:00 CET (GMT+1)

You can expect insights into the value VR can provide, where it is best applied, what the technology doesn’t bend to, and how to evaluate (and influence) your organization’s readiness for adopting new channels and methods – such as VR.

You can join the complimentary webinar by registering through this link:

http://bit.ly/35Iif3a

Speakers

Michael Neidhöfer

The CEO of ZREALITY, the provider of the world’s first marketing platform for XR apps & content, Michael is a serial entrepreneur who has successfully built several companies in his past, such as Netbiscuits, one of the largest mobile application platforms worldwide. Michael’s key expertise is building hyperscaling B2B SaaS/Cloud platforms and digital business models. Michael also supports several technology start-ups as a Business Angel and Advisor. He has been nominated 3 times as “Entrepreneur of the Year” in Germany.

Andreas Ringsted

The Head of Digital Experience at Open, Andreas has worked for +15 years creating engaging communication and experiences in external and internal communications, developing campaigns and initiatives for a long list of clients like the United Nations, the European Union, Pandora, Carlsberg, Georg Jensen, and Microsoft. Always at the forefront of technology and looking for innovative solutions, Andreas advises clients on digital solutions, across organizational levels and functions.

Facilitator

Kristina Malther

The Managing Director of Open CPT, Open’s subsidiary in South Africa, and co-founder of Open, Kristina is an expert in internal- and change communication. She has complemented her master’s degree in Communication and Psychology with training in project management, systemic leadership, MBTI/typology, coaching and facilitation. Kristina has more than 15 years’ experience as a consultant, advisor and leader.

Michael and Andreas will discuss the topic for 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Open is the leading internal communication agency

We combine strategic and creative communication to get everyone engaged in reaching corporate goals. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs and corporate culture, and we put their employees at the centre of everything we do.

How VR can add value to internal communications

and why you too should consider introducing it into your organization

In this 45-minute webinar facilitated by Kristina Malther, Michael Neidhöfer and Andreas Ringsted discuss the value of VR in internal communications and answer your questions on the topic.

New technologies are making their way into our private and work lives. Virtual reality (VR) is no longer the realm of gamers and technology geeks alone. Instead, we see more and more marketing, communication, and education employing VR and augmented reality (AR).

With this evolution of VR we see a new, innovative and engaging communication channel emerging – but what can it do, when, and what should you use it for, and how expensive and difficult is it really? What about the ROI – is it worth it all?

Michael and Andreas will discuss the topic for 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Time: Thursday 12th December 2019, 15:00 CET (GMT+1)

You can expect insights into the value VR can provide, where it is best applied, what the technology doesn’t bend to, and how to evaluate (and influence) your organization’s readiness for adopting new channels and methods – such as VR.

You can join the complimentary webinar by registering through this link:

http://bit.ly/35Iif3a

Speakers

Michael Neidhöfer

The CEO of ZREALITY, the provider of the world’s first marketing platform for XR apps & content, Michael is a serial entrepreneur who has successfully built several companies in his past, such as Netbiscuits, one of the largest mobile application platforms worldwide. Michael’s key expertise is building hyperscaling B2B SaaS/Cloud platforms and digital business models. Michael also supports several technology start-ups as a Business Angel and Advisor. He has been nominated 3 times as “Entrepreneur of the Year” in Germany.

Andreas Ringsted

The Head of Digital Experience at Open, Andreas has worked for +15 years creating engaging communication and experiences in external and internal communications, developing campaigns and initiatives for a long list of clients like the United Nations, the European Union, Pandora, Carlsberg, Georg Jensen, and Microsoft. Always at the forefront of technology and looking for innovative solutions, Andreas advises clients on digital solutions, across organizational levels and functions.

Facilitator

Kristina Malther

The Managing Director of Open CPT, Open’s subsidiary in South Africa, and co-founder of Open, Kristina is an expert in internal- and change communication. She has complemented her master’s degree in Communication and Psychology with training in project management, systemic leadership, MBTI/typology, coaching and facilitation. Kristina has more than 15 years’ experience as a consultant, advisor and leader.

Michael and Andreas will discuss the topic for 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Open is the leading internal communication agency

We combine strategic and creative communication to get everyone engaged in reaching corporate goals. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs and corporate culture, and we put their employees at the centre of everything we do.


Open webinar storytelling in organizational transformations

The power of storytelling in organizational transformations

webinar storytelling in organizational transformations open communication

How do we solve for business leaders’ biggest challenges, and what is on their agenda today? What does culture have to do with competitive advantage and how can stories affect it? And, how can we drive behavioral change?

Mark Lloyd and Alexander Stephanou will discuss storytelling as a driver of organizational change in this 45-minute webinar.

You can expect insights into transformation in the face of disruption; the role culture plays in organizational change; and how to drive behavioral change through stories.

 

You can join the complimentary webinar here: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/2918060280755021323

Time: Tuesday 10th September 2019 16PM CEST (GMT +2)

Speakers:

Mark Lloyd

The Director of Client Strategy for Avanoo, a culture story technology platform, Mark works with some of the world’s leading companies to help them understand how stories can create positive impact in their organizations. Mark and Avanoo are trusted partners to companies like Google, Toyota, and Roche. Prior to joining Avanoo, Mark spent over 12 years researching storytelling with thought leading organizations such as The New York Times and Conde Nast.

Alexander Stephanou

The CCO of Open, a global employee communications agency, Alexander has 10+ years of experience working with commercial excellence, strategic HR and leadership in large, international enterprises and small, fast-growing businesses. Alexander is the author of several papers, a frequent speaker at webinars and conferences with contributions to, among others, HR People + Strategy’s Annual Conference, Bersin by Deloitte’s Annual Conference, AHRMA’s Annual Conference and HR People + Strategy’s Strategic HR Forum.

Facilitator:

Kristina Malther

The Managing Director of Open CPT, Open’s subsidiary in South Africa, and co-founder of Open, Kristina is an expert in internal- and change communication. She has complemented her Master’s degree in Communication and Psychology with training in project management, systemic leadership, mbti/typology, coaching and facilitation. Kristina has more than 15 years’ experience as a consultant, advisor and leader.

Mark and Alexander will discuss the topic for roughly 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Open is a leading employee communication agency

We combine strategic and creative communication to get everyone engaged in reaching corporate goals. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs and corporate culture, and we put their employees at the center of everything we do.

How do we solve for business leaders’ biggest challenges, and what is on their agenda today? What does culture have to do with competitive advantage and how can stories affect it? And, how can we drive behavioral change?

Mark Lloyd and Alexander Stephanou will discuss storytelling as a driver of organizational change in this 45-minute webinar.

You can expect insights into transformation in the face of disruption; the role culture plays in organizational change; and how to drive behavioral change through stories.

 

You can join the complimentary webinar here: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/2918060280755021323

Time: Tuesday 10th September 2019 16PM CEST (GMT +2)

Speakers:

Mark Lloyd

The Director of Client Strategy for Avanoo, a culture story technology platform, Mark works with some of the world’s leading companies to help them understand how stories can create positive impact in their organizations. Mark and Avanoo are trusted partners to companies like Google, Toyota, and Roche. Prior to joining Avanoo, Mark spent over 12 years researching storytelling with thought leading organizations such as The New York Times and Conde Nast.

Alexander Stephanou

The CCO of Open, a global employee communications agency, Alexander has 10+ years of experience working with commercial excellence, strategic HR and leadership in large, international enterprises and small, fast-growing businesses. Alexander is the author of several papers, a frequent speaker at webinars and conferences with contributions to, among others, HR People + Strategy’s Annual Conference, Bersin by Deloitte’s Annual Conference, AHRMA’s Annual Conference and HR People + Strategy’s Strategic HR Forum.

Facilitator:

Kristina Malther

The Managing Director of Open CPT, Open’s subsidiary in South Africa, and co-founder of Open, Kristina is an expert in internal- and change communication. She has complemented her Master’s degree in Communication and Psychology with training in project management, systemic leadership, mbti/typology, coaching and facilitation. Kristina has more than 15 years’ experience as a consultant, advisor and leader.

 

Mark and Alexander will discuss the topic for roughly 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Open is a leading employee communication agency

We combine strategic and creative communication to get everyone engaged in reaching corporate goals. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs and corporate culture, and we put their employees at the center of everything we do.

webinar storytelling in organizational transformations open communication

Webinar: The power of storytelling in organizational transformation

How do we solve for business leaders’ biggest challenges, and what is on their agenda today? What does culture have to do with competitive advantage and how can stories affect it? And, how can we drive behavioral change?

Mark Lloyd and Alexander Stephanou will discuss storytelling as a driver of organizational change in this 45-minute webinar.

You can expect insights into transformation in the face of disruption; the role culture plays in organizational change; and how to drive behavioral change through stories.

 

You can join the complimentary webinar here: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/2918060280755021323

Time: Tuesday 10th September 2019 16PM CEST (GMT +2)

Speakers:

Mark Lloyd

The Director of Client Strategy for Avanoo, a culture story technology platform, Mark works with some of the world’s leading companies to help them understand how stories can create positive impact in their organizations. Mark and Avanoo are trusted partners to companies like Google, Toyota, and Roche. Prior to joining Avanoo, Mark spent over 12 years researching storytelling with thought leading organizations such as The New York Times and Conde Nast.

Alexander Stephanou

The CCO of Open, a global employee communications agency, Alexander has 10+ years of experience working with commercial excellence, strategic HR and leadership in large, international enterprises and small, fast-growing businesses. Alexander is the author of several papers, a frequent speaker at webinars and conferences with contributions to, among others, HR People + Strategy’s Annual Conference, Bersin by Deloitte’s Annual Conference, AHRMA’s Annual Conference and HR People + Strategy’s Strategic HR Forum.

Facilitator:

Kristina Malther

The Managing Director of Open CPT, Open’s subsidiary in South Africa, and co-founder of Open, Kristina is an expert in internal- and change communication. She has complemented her Master’s degree in Communication and Psychology with training in project management, systemic leadership, mbti/typology, coaching and facilitation. Kristina has more than 15 years’ experience as a consultant, advisor and leader.

Mark and Alexander will discuss the topic for roughly 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Open is a leading employee communication agency

We combine strategic and creative communication to get everyone engaged in reaching corporate goals. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs and corporate culture, and we put their employees at the center of everything we do.


Problem space boy flying wings

Personal best - staying in the problem space

tina legor problem space advisor

Tina Legor is a senior creative advisor at Open – she is the head of Open’s event panel, and with a solid track record of campaigns executed, is a trusted advisor on client projects. Tina has a knack for seeing the bigger picture: why we are doing what we are doing. Below, Tina shares some key lessons on the importance of staying in the problem space.

tina legor problem space advisor

Tina Legor is a senior creative advisor at Open – she is the head of Open’s event panel, and with a solid track record of campaigns executed, is a trusted advisor on client projects. Tina has a knack for seeing the bigger picture: why we are doing what we are doing. Below, Tina shares some key lessons on the importance of staying in the problem space.

Personal best - staying in the problem space

By: Tina Legor, Senior Creative Advisor (25 June 2019)

What’s the starting point for thinking about the problem space in internal communications?

We are advisors and need to see the bigger picture before going into solutions. We advise our clients and help them solve their specific internal communication needs. That's our purpose. So why do we need to stay in the problem space? We could just pull a solution from the catalogue, right? Also, why is it so difficult – to keep asking and figuring out what we’re solving? Both for us, and for our clients?

Good questions, can you try to answer some of them?

Yeah, let’s start with the first one: ‘Why do we need to stay in the problem space?’ – we can’t advise if we don’t ask several why’s and look at the bigger picture. It’s like working with no limits and creativity lives in the problem space.

The fear of failure often cripples creativity and you step out of the problem space and jump into quick solutions. But failure is more likely if you are too hasty to leave the problem space –so, jump onboard because the problem space is wide open until you close it. Work with no limits and keep on thinking and innovating. Define your goals before you leave the problem space otherwise it’s just production and it might not create great value for the client. In addition, once you have looked deep enough into the problem, the solutions are pretty much formed in the process”.

So why is it so difficult to do?

We often get clients asking for specific deliverables – and this is pretty natural. They’ve already arrived at a solution before calling us. If they want a video, we can jump right to it and create a beautiful film, storytelling and all. People may view it several times and share it on SoMe and everybody will sing hallelujah. But we missed out the fun time in the problem space, and don’t know if we are doing the right thing. We’ve spent no time discussing the big W’s – we’ve most likely done a pretty good video that creates a little extra engagement, but solves nothing.

Can you give me an example of a success with the problem space?

Yes of course. We recently had a great process with a client - it is still ongoing. We have together spent quite a bit of time plotting out all the initiatives on the communications agenda for the years ahead and strengthened the link between the strategy and values, mission and purpose. We’ve defined the main groups of stakeholders across the organization and defined what we wish to achieve through communication initiatives with the different groups - where we believe they are now, and where we wish them to move – and how best we move them there. This process has given us and the client a good overview of the coming years and together we have created a clear roadmap of what we wish to achieve and a process map on how to achieve it. This has been a really rewarding process.

Could you break that down into some concrete actions?

It’s a team effort and it isn’t done overnight. A great starting point is to ensure that you have the right people with the right knowledge involved at client side as well as the project team at the agency.

 

It could look something like this:

  • What is the business need behind communicating ie. why are we doing this?
  • Make the link between your project and the organization’s big view
  • Define your stakeholders – recipients of your communication efforts.
    Where are they now, where do you want to move them; how do you best reach them – why do you need to reach them?
  • Get an overview of what else is on the communication agenda and plan accordingly

 

By doing this, we can formulate strong goals for the project. This also creates something to look back to when you’re in the thick of a project, and you may be questioning why things are happening a certain way.

As a creative advisor, this gives me a broader view and perspective of the client and with this in mind, I can demonstrate the value of what I am doing. Now I can step out of the problem space and deliver solutions that fit the whole communication purpose. The goal is to get everyone connected to what we’re creating and build excitement from that.

 

boy flying wings


Meet James, your new colleague

[email protected]
M +45 5375 7121

Meet James, your new colleague

Dear future colleague,

 

It’s nice to (virtually) meet you. I’m reaching out from the comfort of my desk, considering what I should write about. What do you want to hear? What would I want to hear if I were in your shoes? I could sit here all day talking about how great it is to work at Open, but then this would become like any other glorified advertisement. If you are anything like me, you’ll want to feel how it is to be here. How does working for this company engage you on a personal level? So, I will tell you about my experience– and hope that you can relate.

 

I never played well in teams. I guess this comes down to my upbringing. I won’t bore you with the details here, but the end result was an attitude of ‘I can and will do this alone’. My freelance film career consisted of taking on far too much and pushing myself past the point of exhaustion. Recover, rinse, repeat. My first relationship with Open was within this time period, them being the client and me, the freelance film specialist for hire.

 

Did I expect much? Not particularly. It was simply another opportunity to make some money. As usual, I put my head down and started to work. Lunch was eaten behind the computer, and conversation was kept superficial. Business as usual. It was after a couple of shoots that I started to notice something different. There was an atmosphere here, and not a tense ‘who stole my post-it notes’ vibe. It was as though the entire office were alive. People chatted, help was offered, a genuine happiness consistently resonated within the walls.

 

I continued to freelance for Open over the years and would always look forward to coming back for the next project.

Even with my minimal hours spent there, I would still feel part of something when I returned, as though no time had passed at all. Open had become my benchmark, and as a result I found my skills improving as I pushed to make my own impact. Needless to say, when they offered me a fulltime position, I jumped at the opportunity. I liked the person that I was becoming.

Ironically, it took developing my career to help me realize the value of a work /life balance.

I credit this entirely to the culture at Open. Never had I been treated so humanely. The encouragement to develop myself both professionally and personally was a new experience, one - it turns out, I had been deeply craving. I could have the best of both worlds. In fact, both worlds helped each other to flourish.

 

At Open, we are all expected to take responsibility for our projects, pushing them forward to completion. While this falls on your shoulders, you’re not alone in your journey. There’s space to talk with others, help one-another to develop ideas and talk through complicated solutions. If your project requires a skill that you’re unfamiliar with, there is a whole office of resourceful people at your disposal. Cross communication is highly encouraged and in the process, you’ll find yourself picking up skills that you never even considered having.

 

It’s hard not to view the people working here as more than work colleagues, and I’m proud to call them my friends. We all bring our own unique style; styles which are explored and nurtured for being the assets that they are. Our diversity is held together by a common mission – to develop, to grow, to push ourselves to be the best creatives that we can possibly imagine, and more so, to find value in every day. When I look back at myself and the company, well... we’ve both come a long way.

 

So then, how does this make me feel? To sum up my experience with Open – I feel engaged! But more than this – I feel like I’ve found home.

 

Your future colleague, James


Webinar internal communication

Webinar: The strategic role of internal communication

webinar internal communication
webinar internal communication

Webinar: The strategic role of internal communication: How IC will continue to make an impact

Internal communication as a discipline has been moving from the role of a distributor of information and an engager of employees to a more strategic business function. What are the challenges in this move, and how to act on them?

Mike Klein and Kasper Steensen will discuss this topic from their respective points of view in this 45-minute webinar.

 

You can expect insights into what the alignment gap is and how it stands in your way; where engagement, the hot topic of the past years, fits in the picture; what we mean by reducing noise; and how being human can help you gain the trust of your audience.

 

You can join the complimentary webinar here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1751079319179007757

 

Time:  Tuesday 18th June 2019, 10AM CEST (GMT+2)

Speakers

Mike Klein

One of the most visible voices and writers in the world of Internal Communication, Mike Klein is a Netherlands-based IC consultant with more than twenty years of experience. Mike has worked with major corporates including Maersk Oil, Cargill, Shell, Avery Dennison, easyJet, and Barclays, and has a strong focus on internal influence and qualitative research. An MBA graduate of London Business School, Mike is EMENA Regional Chair of the International Association of Business Communicators and principal of Changing the Terms.

Kasper Steensen

The CSO, partner and co-founder of Open, a Copenhagen based employee communications agency, Kasper has over 15 years of experience in working with internal communications, both as a field and in practice. He knows the ins and outs of the art, has advised large, global organizations such as Carlsberg, Novo Nordisk, Maersk, and Pandora, and has his finger on the pulse of what is moving in the field. He is a multi-artist when it comes to combining a strategic mindset with creative execution.

Facilitator

Kristina Malther

The Managing Director of Open CPT, Open's subsidiary in South Africa, and co-founder of Open, Kristina is an expert in internal and change communication. She has complemented her Master’s degree in Communication and Psychology with training in project management, systemic leadership, mbti/typology, coaching and facilitation. Kristina has more than 15 years' experience as a consultant, advisor and leader.

Mike and Kasper will discuss the topic for roughly 30 minutes, with Kristina opening the arena for questions and comments both during and after.

Open is a leading employee communication agency

We combine strategic and creative communication to get everyone engaged in reaching corporate goals. We work closely with our clients to understand their needs and corporate culture, and we put their employees at the center of everything we do.


Highlights from Open's Event Expert Panel

Highlights from Open's Event Expert Panel

By: Tina Legor, Senior Creative Advisor (3 June 2019)

Last week, a bunch of experienced professionals gathered to discuss internal corporate events and the role of communication. Topics covered at the panel discussion were:

  1. Cross-location & virtual participation; and
  2. Activation of purpose & culture

 

Open Event Panel

The discussion was fruitful, and we’re pleased to share some of the key highlights covered during the two-hour event:

  1. Plan the ‘event’ with the virtual participants in mind – involve the (incoming) callers and keep it human.

People connect with people and want to feel human and seen. In these modern times, using modern tools, it is fundamental to ensure that the technology does not stand in the way. So, when you plan your event, remember the virtual participants too – specifically if it’s a mixed audience where some people are physically present and others participate virtually.

Create a set-up where the virtual participants can be exactly that – participants, instead of just a passive audience.

  1. Put yourself in the user’s place

This point links strongly to the first one made. It is crucial that you put yourself in the participants’ shoes when you decide on the details of your event. Think of what they need to have the best experience, and what ensures that you succeed in achieving the goals of the event. This applies to when you choose the software to use, the timing of your event, the topic to cover, and the format to deliver in.

Always think: how will this be experienced?

  1. Encourage the local communities to sit together – be disciplined and control the meeting (Code of Conduct)

Instead of asking people to dial in independently, we strongly recommend you to encourage communal participation. The entire team sitting together participating, creates a dynamic that strengthens the impact of the event, helps people focus, and gives much more meat for discussion afterward.

  1. The 8-minute rule – something new should happen every 8th minute

This is the simplest and easiest of our take-aways to go and act on. We live in a world of shortening attention spans; to ensure that your participants remain focused and follow your event, give them something new at least every 8th minute.

Tina Legor is a Senior Creative Advisor at Open – she is also the head of Open’s Event Panel, with a solid track record of campaigns executed and a trusted advisor on client projects.

Tina Legor


Empowering employees with the New Views of Safety

Empowering employees with the New Views of Safety

What are the New Views of Safety? What are the principles behind Safety Differently and Human and Organizational Performance (HOP)? How could the principles work as an inspiration for how we communicate and engage in safety? How do we use this to empower employees? These are all questions we answered in our last Safety Panel meeting.

A not so new concept but currently a rapid growing movement

The ‘New Views of Safety’ is a global movement personified by Sidney Dekker and Todd Conklin and their principles behind Safety Differently and Human and Organizational Performance (HOP), advocating for a new approach to Safety management and employee empowerment.

The priciples originate as a response to a growing safety bureaucracy for employees and leaders, who are being held accountable for low number of LTIs, Hazards, medical treatments etc. – all safety success being measured based on negatives. The result is a growing disengagement in safety initiatives from employees and organizational functions, who are looking for competency, common sense, and instructions fit for the job at hand. 

It hit a nerve with top management

It's got a one size fits all approach but it definitely seems to hit a nerve with top management, as well as the ones who do the safety critical work every day who in many cases, experience that safety performance is at a standstill and lacks progression.

The principles

Safety Differently

  1. Safety is not defined by the absence of accidents, but the presence of capacity.
  2. Workers aren’t the problem; workers are the problem-solvers.
  3. We don’t constrain workers in order to create safety, we ask workers what they need to do in order to work safely, reliably and productively.
  4. Safety doesn’t prevent bad things from happening. Safety ensures good things happen, while workers do work in complex and adaptable work environments.

Human Performance

  1. Error is normal; even the best people make mistakes.
  2. Blame fixes nothing.
  3. Learning and improving are vital. Learning is deliberate.
  4. Context drives behavior. Systems drive outcomes.
  5. How you respond to failure matters. How leaders act and respond counts.

In the pure form of principles, they appear universal and something you could apply to all work situations:

  • People want to do a good job, 
  • People make mistakes, 
  • People respond to encouragement,
  • Behavior is influenced by culture,
  • People want to make sense of their work

How do you actually build capability with strategic safety communication?

It’s about using Near Miss reporting, Corrective actions, or Continuous improvementin new and more involving ways to drive development and learning in the organization. And recognizing that the experts are the actual people who do the safety critical work on a daily basis.

3 Key steps to empower employees to take action and share progress along the way:

  1. Establish the why
    An emotional connection inspires behavior. Collect insights and devise an eye-opening story that sets the scene and can inspire your target group.
  2. Put leaders in front
    Appoint someone to take leadership amongst the front-line employees and equip the ‘ambassadors’ in their role. Use a versatile, common framework to facilitate the link between the vision and people’s every day work situations.
  3. Translate capability into actions
    It’s not new that culture eats strategy for breakfast. So, make room for local ownership and adaptation and create authentic experiences that people can learn from, engage with and share with colleagues. 

The above might be framed differently based on another area of expertise than employee communication, but we know that this works with employee engagement.

The Open Safety Panel is a network of 15 different international companies who all have Health & Safety high on the agenda. The panel meets 2-3 times a year under different topics with the purpose to share best practice and develop new ideas on how to build a strong safety culture. If you want to know more, contact me on [email protected]

 


5 employee communications trends in 2017

5 trends in employee communication
5 trends in employee communication

5 employee communications trends in 2017

What will we see this year, now that Workplace by Facebook has been tested successfully? And after disruption and gamification found their way into the employee communications scene? Here’s our take on five trends that will shape employee communications this year.

By: Solrun Sigfusdottir Øfjord, Communication Advisor (2 January 2017)

When we look at employee communications trends for 2017, the common thread is courage, action and engagement. Also, employee communications (EC) will fetch inspiration from disciplines such as digitalization, business development and statistics.

Deep diving into new technology and employee communications

We will need to adapt and execute even faster than today.

We’ll need to take disruption and digitalization into account.

And we’ll need to act on the fact that our stakeholders expect the same results and documentation from EC as they observe and experience within external communication.

So, here is what we see as five major trends for employee communications in 2017:

1. Business-driven internal comms

Over the past few years, KPIs and performance measurements have become a part of everyday life in many EC departments. In 2017, EC will take it a bit further in a performance direction and be highly inspired by methods from business development and branding.

Just as top management focuses on how to develop a profitable business creating products of value for customers and investors, the EC department will be driven as a business.

The EC department will evaluate its business model:

  • What is the core business for EC in the organization?
  • What value should it create? Is it a profitable business?
  • What is the value we add?

Because one thing is certain: When we speak the same language as the CEO, the management will see the value of EC even more clearly. And perhaps budgets will even grow.

2. Many small measurements give the big picture

ROI, big data and measuring impact has been on our lips the last five years. But now, we break the code on what we as EC professionals historically are rather poor at: to measure the effect of IC.

There are two main reasons why measurements gain momentum in 2017:

  1. It is now possible to collect quantitative data from platforms other than the intranet. Mobile-enabled games and quizzes are becoming a more common part of EC campaigns. We can link data with behavior, to give us an indication of needs and where there is room for improvement.
  2. We are accepting that measurements do not have to be 100% methodologically correct and true to triangulation, representativeness, validity and reliability. It is okay to take the temperature of distinct elements of a campaign, e.g. the target group’s understanding of a strategy.

And it is better to execute small and more frequent pulse measurements than 360° measurements; many small measurements together over time will paint the big picture.

3. The leader in front

Communication is one of the most important keys to successful leadership. That is old news. However, it is a trend that managers are becoming increasingly conscious of their role as communicators.Their communication competencies must now also fit their management level.

We will meet a growing number of leaders who insist on being fully prepared to orchestrate their communication. They will not accept classic cascading frameworks where they inherit a PowerPoint down the line and have limited flexibility to create authenticity and true engagement.

This imposes great requirements for the communication training of the leaders with some trends that are sticking. Leaders now demand fully customized communication kits, with step-by- step guides for engaging, motivating and authentic dialogue with employees. These kits contain engagement exercises, videos, and other items with a creative twist, some of which may never have been seen before inside the organization.

4. Co-creation is the new bottom-up

The target audience is still the center of the communication, but outside-in perspectives will play a greater role in EC. Stakeholders and end-users will be involved early in the development of internal campaigns. When planning a strategy roll-out, the need of the markets will play a greater role than ever before in the bottom-up communication. The methods used are brainstorming, prioritizing exercises and prototyping – methods known from external product development.

In other words, co-creation will make a breakthrough this year.

And why now, 17 years after the concept was born?

Because digital communication is growing both internally and externally, and in digital communication, co-creating with end-users is an important part of creating great deliverables. Within IC, we are always looking for great arguments for management on how important IC is in creating employer engagement, and an argument that the target was involved in developing the communication deliverables is stronger than quotes from a focus group.

Perhaps the greatest strength of co-creation is the minimal effort it requires. We can now get a baseline on the target group’s level of knowledge, engagement and needs. We also take the initial steps in implementing the strategic initiatives already in the design phase because representatives from the target group already are involved and have become great ambassadors.

5. Social intranets as innovation engines

Social intranets will turn internal communication upside-down, regardless of whether the technical solution is Workplace, Slack, SharePoint or something else. After two years of beta testing, expect Workplace to be talk-of- the-town and lead to more organizations implementing social intranets.

Social intranets focus on employees’ needs for rapid knowledge sharing, support and social community.

Moreover, social intranets can break down silos, boost dialog and support knowledge sharing on the terms of the employees. It is a revolution for knowledge sharing and introducing social intranets can become the determining factor in making employees open the intranet as the first thing in the morning.

In the end, we need to be agile

So, roll up your sleeves – we have work to do. EC is more exciting and more challenging than ever and this year we will prove ourselves as the hybrids we are, juggling communications, facts, figures and technology.


Social media in internal communication

A guide for using social media in internal communication

A guide for using social media in internal communication

The use of social media in employee communication continues being a hot subject, and is still a mystery to many. Download Open's publication on the subject, and maybe you will fetch a couple of tricks.

By: Cristina Gavrila, Communication Specialist (2 February 2017)

Social media is currently at the top of many internal communicators to-do lists, and it is the hot subject on various blogs and discussion forum for internal communication. But why should companies invest in internal social media? And how should they get started using these tools?

This guide was developed in collaboration with communicators from Carlsberg, Arla, GEA Process Engineering and Christian Hansen during 2013 to 2014, and while some of its content has become outdated by now, its core value has been preserved due to its lively examples and strategic guidelines on using social media for employee communication.

Download publication

Employee communications – About Open

Our approach

We believe that creating curiosity, encouraging active involvement, and sharing progress and successes is what engages employees.

Our Inspire-Act-Share engagement model is at the core of everything we do.

What we do

We empower employees. We boost local decision making by providing employees with business insight and sense of direction required to make the right choices in everyday work.

We create purpose by ensuring high employee engagement and performance by translating business strategies into meaningful and purposeful messages that employees can relate to.

We unite organizations by enabling the organization to function as one efficient organism by building bridges that tie the organization together, breaking down silos and hierarchies.


10 ways to kill your employee communications

10 ways to kill your communication employee communications
10 ways to kill your communication employee communications

10 ways to kill your employee communications

Check out this Open golden oldie: '10 ways to kill your employee communications'. This short publication contains a tour-de-force of what often goes wrong in internal communication.

By: Cristina Gavrila, Communication Specialist (5 January 2017)

When we originally created this employee communications booklet, it was meant as a one-off cheerful gimmick, but it has proven to be a big hit around the office. If you have ever visited us, you probably have your own print copy.

Clients often refer to the messages inside, page through it when visiting and have a little laugh about it. As we’re currently doing a third print of it, we believe it shows the power of combining simple messages with a bit of humor.

Download the publication below for a good laugh on how to kill communication.

DOWNLOAD PUBLICATION

Employee communications – About Open

Our approach

We believe that creating curiosity, encouraging active involvement, and sharing progress and successes is what engages employees.

Our Inspire-Act-Share engagement model is at the core of everything we do.

What we do

We empower employees. We boost local decision making by providing employees with business insight and sense of direction required to make the right choices in everyday work.

We create purpose by ensuring high employee engagement and performance by translating business strategies into meaningful and purposeful messages that employees can relate to.

We unite organizations by enabling the organization to function as one efficient organism by building bridges that tie the organization together, breaking down silos and hierarchies.