open employee experience

It's all about the experience - also for people at work

open employee experience
open employee experience

It's all about the experience - also for people at work

Developing your business by improving the customer experience is also about optimizing the employee experience. How? Here’s help to fetch from a communication point of view.

By: Anna Porko, Communication Advisor, & Tina Dejan, Digital Experience Director (June 11, 2018)

Most organizations focus on continuous improvement of their customer experience. They anchor the ownership of the customer experience, bring in competencies that excel in experience design, and shape the organizations around the customer.

Organizations do this for one simple reason – because it pays off. Designing the customer experience to meet and exceed the customers’ expectations, preferences, and needs results in a competitive advantage on which companies win business.

At the core of the customer experience lie the employees – the people in your organization. They form, deliver, and innovate the customer experience. So, you could definitely argue that the customer experience relies on the employee experience – an argument fully supported by the reasons that drive customer loyalty and why customers leave.

What is employee experience?
Like customer experience, this employee experience – thing is there, whether you decide to influence it to your benefit or not.

A definition of employee experience could sound something like this: ‘Employee Experience is the sum of all interactions an employee has with an employer’.

To break this down into actionable elements, best-selling author and futurist Jacob Morgan, offers a structure that groups the employee experiences in three main environments: the cultural, the technical, and the physical.

The most important elements in each environment to investigate and address are:

open employee experience

Why bother with Employee Experience?
Studies indicate that 68% of customers leave a company because of a poor employee attitude, and 70% of customer brand perception is determined by the experience with the company’s employees. Improving the foundation for the employees’ attitude, that is the experience you offer your employees, will have a direct impact on how your customers relate to your company, and therefor also to your top line.

We live in an increasingly digital and transparent world, where employees – also driven by the rising number of millennials in the workforce – expect meaningful and enjoyable work experiences. We are no longer grateful for having a job just because we need one. We look for jobs that are meaningful to us and companies whose purpose we can identify with. Our jobs are a defining part of our lives and we are getting increasingly selective – just like customers.

Employees whose needs and expectations are met and exceeded are more productive. They are passionate and enthusiastic about their work and the organisation they work for. They align with the organisation’s mission and positively drive the organisation’s reputation and interests – in the office and out. As you can see, employee experience has a direct impact on your bottomline through higher productivity, but also through improved talent attraction, lower turnover, and lesser absenteeism.

How to take first or next steps?
We have worked on simplifying the first steps in how to take the first steps in creating a holistic employee experience design in your organization:

  1. Connect to purpose and business drivers
    First, make sure you can connect your focus on employee experience to your purpose and business drivers.
  2. Explore, discover, and generate data and insights
    Get to know your people, what makes them tick, what are their aspirations, how do they like and need to work. Use the data you already have, go talk to your people in a structured way, and don’t forget the digital workplace platforms. The technology driven platforms provide quantitative and behavioral data on channel preferences, on collaboration methods, and on informal structures within the organization.
  1. Get to know the employee experience you offer today
    The design and strategic execution must be driven by data on what the employees are actually experiencing: Where the pain points are, what is going well, what is missing, what do the employees aspire to, and what is standing in their way? Once, you understand the reality of your employees’ as human beings, you will see how to create an experience that is rewarding, motivating, engaging, and that attracts the best talent.

By comparing your findings from the points above, you will get a picture on the employees’ needs and wants contra your present offering. Align this to your business drivers and you can prioritize where to begin your efforts. Think of it as an eco-system that provides an infrastructure for continuous calibration – not a one-off project.

How can internal communication contribute?
So, what can we do to create those great employee experiences? This is not something you can do alone. You will need to align HR, IT, communication, and management – maybe facilities and sales too, to pull together.

The communication you offer internally should support the needs and preferences of the employees, not only the needs of the business. Ensure that internal and external messaging are fully aligned.

External marketing communication have already cracked this nut – think of the direct communications where all content is tailored to the recipient and delivered at the right time. They are already there. Internal communications is learning from its older sister, and doing it fast. We’re learning to utilize data to support decision making and the creation of employee experiences. And although we are one piece among many in a bigger puzzle of employee experience, let’s not be the one in the wrong spot.

If you are interested in a more detailed breakdown on how to start thinking about employee experience and driving it in your organization – have a look at our tool, Roadmap to Employee Experience, first published at our annual ChangeComm event, and soon available as a pdf. For now, get in touch and we will get a version over to you!


Employee experience

Employee experience on the agenda

Employee experience
Employee experience

Employee experience on the agenda

Employee Experience is most certainly on the agenda for the approx. 50 communicators that attended. These professionals hail from Denmark’s largest companies present at our ChangeComm event this past Thursday in Copenhagen.

By: Kristina Malther, Managing Director, Open CPT (June 1, 2018)

Employee Experience is a way of working across functions to create not only engagement, but also heighten performance and improving the customer experience.

Employee experience

Three key take-aways from our speakers:

  • Focus on improving the ‘moments that matter’ to employees. The ‘moments that matter’ are at the very core of the Employee Experience in your organisation and the best place to start.
  • Just-do-it! Rather than waiting to come up with the perfect solution. It is a large field, and one that can seem overwhelming, but now is the time to experiment and learn as you go.
  • Be truly curious about the people who work in your organisation to match their needs and wants. Too often we are more concerned with what we think people want, than actually listening to what they really want.

Want to know more about Employee Experience and how to approach it from an employee communication perspective? Get in touch.

 

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.


safety communication best practice

How to communicate and implement best safety practices

safety communication best practice
safety communication best practice

How to communicate and implement best safety practices

In safety communication, sharing best practices is evidence of that efforts matters and that things can be improved. Here are a couple of things to consider and a link to our tool to communicating best practices.

Sharing best practices is about value documentation and exemplifying what works well, provide knowledge, and showcase collaboration. Moreover, it is an important addition to the continual improvement approach, e.g. LEAN, focused on identifying and solving problems.

But what works the best, when communicating best safety practices? And how do we in our communication drive local engagement and adoption? Let’s have a look.

Learning from failures or successes?
In safety communication, it is definitely a balance between learning from failures and near-misses or from successes. There is no doubt that there are learnings to be made from failures and near misses, but in most cases (especially in storytelling), we are proponents for focusing on the positive – that things can be different, safer.

A single-minded focus on problems may be demoralizing because it illustrates failures in people actions. While initiatives promoting what people are doing right, raise morale by demonstrating that achieving e.g. target ZERO is possible.

This can be referred to what is called ‘social proof’ which is a psychological phenomenon where people when in doubt on how to behave look around and mirror their behavior to what they see, hear, or read. That is why it is important to clearly communicate the good example and requirements through tools, safety talks, role-model stories, and local leadership.

What defines best and how to support implementation/adaptation?
The perceptions of a best practice variates from organization to organization, but as a minimum, a best practice must:

  • Be innovative and/or an improvement and/or to set a precedent.
  • Demonstrate evidence of success and sustainable impact.
  • Have the potential to be replicated or adapted to other settings.

There is of cause more to the practice sharing than a catchy title and a positive approach to storytelling. You will also need:

  • People to facilitate identification and sharing.
  • Processes and tools that are designed to share knowledge.
  • A commitment to take the time needed to identify, prepare, communicate, adapt, and to supervise.

Having the check list in place, you now need to drive engagement and adoption in the organization. To succeed your need to be strategic in your communication, and the six steps in the Roadmap below can be a help to get started. Enjoy!

DOWNLOAD TOOL

Open Morning on GDPR

Open Morning on GDPR

Open_Morning_GDPR
Open_Morning_GDPR

Open Morning on GDPR

Do your colleagues know what GDPR is all about? Are they ready for these European regulations in their everyday work? And do they know why GDPR is important?

On 25 May 2018, The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will be enforced. At this Open Morning, we will dive into what to be aware of and how good communication can help make GDPR tangible and relevant for employees.

At Open, we have been working with various Danish companies on preparing their employees for GDPR. Among other projects, we have worked with TDC on an internal awareness campaign, focusing on how to handle these regulations and personal data across TDC.

Program:

  • What is it and what to be aware of
    Rune Fick Hansen from IT-Branchen will give a short introduction to GDPR and share some tips & tricks for what to be aware of.
  • How to anchor it in your organization
    Sune Holm from TDC will talk about how TDC has communicated GDPR to a large and diverse group of employees.

We’ll start at 8:30 a.m. with coffee and croissants, and we’ll wrap up at 9.45 am. Short & sweet, so you can get back to work.

How to register
If you’d like to join us for this exciting Open Morning please send an e-mail with your name and the name of your organization to Partner and Senior Communication Advisor Kasper Beck Steensen at [email protected].

RSVP is 27 May 2018

We hope to see you on 3 May!


LM Wind Power Center of Excellence

Onboard employees through the voices of peers

LM Wind Power Center of Excellence
LM Wind Power Center of Excellence

Onboard employees through the voices of peers

How do you welcome new employees to your training centers using video as a tool, when you are not allowed to film the facilities? You engage the employees to tell their personal experiences.

By: Simon Charles Quintal, Senior Creative Advisor & Video Specialist (April 18, 2018)

Creating impactful employee films that talk directly to peoples’ hearts and minds requires… yes, people. The right people and their stories. It is the people who give the human touch, add the personal angle, and make the viewer feel.

This was in the back of our minds, when LM Wind Power asked for our help for a film to welcome new people to their training centers, Center of Excellence. There was just one challenge; we were not allowed to film the locations from the inside due to confidentiality.

Creating authenticity through the unpredictable
The result was an emotional and powerful state-of-mind-film told from the employees’ perspective rather than a story about buildings and rooms; One long film and three short versions of the one for use on SoMe.

What we experience as the main challenge in this type of production is trust. In traditional corporate communication, the messages need to be very clear and correct. But when asking employees to speak from the heart it becomes hard to control all the variables. From a client’s perspective, that can be difficult to buy into.

Yet, the biggest benefit is without a doubt the honesty of the final production. If you trust the employees to deliver a message that they believe in and to tell it in their own words, it becomes much more credible and powerful. And by leaving room for the unexpected, you also get a sense of the people and their reality – such as Gabi in one of the films helping her daughter study. None of that is scripted.

Watch the three films below. We hope you like them.
You can read more about our view on films here, here and here.

Building people before blades: Gabi’s story

Building people before blades: Carlos’ story

Building people before blades: Luis’ story


Make your strategy personal with video

video in strategy
video in strategy

Make your strategy personal with video

We bet you have seen a good film about people. But have you seen a good film about strategy? This is where you need your employees to keep it real and personal.

By: Anna Porko, Communication Advisor, & Lars Wittrock, Senior Creative Advisor & Video Specialist (April 10, 2018)

An organizational strategy is often an advanced document with facts, figures, buzzwords and high-level business jargon. And it needs to be: It is the realm of net profit margins and compound annual growth rates, of five-year goals, efficiency optimization and market shares. A good strategy gives direction for the journey to come, and it acts like an umbrella under which every employee has their place.

In turn, employees want to know where they are, and where they are going to – personally. They want to have an answer to the question: What does that mean to me? This means that for rolling out and communicating the strategy, the main goals are to answer that question and to make people feel like: ‘I want to be a part of that journey’. Even when it is hard.

This is not easy to do. People relate to people, to authenticity, to struggle, to humanity. That is not the language of strategy.

Make it personal with video
We bet you have seen a good film about people. But have you seen a good film about strategy?

This is where video comes in. It is a language of its own. With video you can build soundscapes and landscapes, tell stories, connect. You can make it count for somebody. You can use film to evoke emotion in people and through emotion you can create commitment and engagement.

The classical strategy video is an explainer, going into details on what is to come and how it affects the organization. Instead, make sure to answer the why. Leaning on your vision and mission, this video is all about why you are on the journey of your new strategy. It is close to branding, and the aim is to make your people feel like they want to be a part of that journey.

Make time for the process – it is essential
It takes time and countless brainstorming sessions to write a good manuscript for a video that personalizes something as unemotional as strategy. Writing a story that is honest, personal and relatable based on a strategy document is hard, but worth it. At its best it creates trust, it can comfort, give a sense of belonging, and evoke pride.

The jump to a more personal, storytelling style on strategy can be big and difficult to make for most organizations.

So, one thing to reflect on: How would you feel if your strategy video made your people proud enough to want to show it at home too, saying: ‘This is what I am a part of’.

–o0o–

Five tips of the trade

The strategy might change over time, but the longer journey remains. If you remember this in your communication production – in your strategy film – it is easier to be true to the larger organizational context and keeping it relatable. These five tips can help you along the way:

  1. Keep it real and personal
    Experiment with first person telling and use real people and let them use their voice. Remember that people relate to people.
  2. Know your people
    Research and use storytelling methods.
  3. Be honest, authentic and believable
    Avoid jargon and nonsensical phrases.
  4. Include adversity, difficulty or challenge
    Overt positivism is easily perceived as false.
  5. Speak to the hearts
    Make it count.


On the Mic: Susanne Biltoft from Alm. Brand

On the Mic Susanne Biltoft
On the Mic Susanne Biltoft

On the Mic: Susanne Biltoft from Alm. Brand

We're so glad to have Susanne Biltoft, Head of Communication & Investor Relations at Alm. Brand, sharing what she sees as key when engaging employees.

By: Solrun Sigfusdottir Øfjord, Senior Communication Advisor (March 28, 2018)

Why do you find it exciting to work with employee communication?
Because it makes all the difference for successful implementation of new or moderated ideas, plans, and means.

What was your latest success, and what made it successful?
To successfully communicate the acquisition of Saxo Privatbank. It was successful because the story we created and communicated about it was correct, short, and precise, but also with broad prospects. This created pride in the whole organization.

What challenges do we face as employee communicators in the coming years?
The need of being able to communicate in more digital ways – meaning that the intranet article is on its way out while videos, chatrooms, brief articles, and podcasts are on their way in. Most importantly, these will be used in a well-orchestrated mix in the future. This is also what I would like to pursue next.

What is best tip to other employee communicators?
To understand your subject, be precise, and create an interesting story that appeals to the world and interests of your receiver. In other words: Create value.

‘On the Mic’ is a series of blog posts that invite internal communication professionals to share their take on employee communication, their view on trends within the field and what rocks their boat. Feel free to send us tips on who should be ‘On the Mic’ next.


LEne_Mi_LM_Wind_Power_OntheMic

On the Mic: Lene Mi Ran Kristiansen from LM Wind Power

Lene_Mi_LM_Wind_Power_OntheMic
Lene_Mi_LM_Wind_Power_OntheMic

On the Mic: Lene Mi Ran Kristiansen from LM Wind Power

We're so glad to have Lene Mi Ran Kristiansen, Senior Manager, Communications & Sustainability at LM Wind Power, sharing what she sees as key when communicating sustainability and carbon neutrality.

By: Betina Sørensen, Senior Creative Advisor (March 4, 2018)

What’s on the top of your employee communication agenda right now?
Strategy execution, GE integration, and sustainability with our carbon neutrality program #CleanLM at the very top!

What was your latest success and what made it a success?
Recently, we did an interactive workshop session for the top 130 global leaders of the company, challenging them to play a huge cardboard game: Go Carbon Neutral in 30 mins.

It was their first in-depth experience with our ambitious sustainability program and it worked brilliantly because the format and game design dynamics compelled our leaders to learn about the concept and methods to go carbon neutral. To be able to finish the game they had to collaborate, negotiate, and agree. It made them reflect on the challenge and daunting task we as a business have taken upon us by setting this ambitious goal.

It was a very effective way of creating awareness and ambassadors who now are able to articulate what we are doing to their teams and other stakeholders, helping to foster further interest, support, and hopefully inspiration so more colleagues get engaged.

Why is it important to communicate your carbon neutrality pledge internally?
Many LM Wind Power employees have taken what we call ‘the green pill’! They genuinely care about the fact that they work in a green company and make a positive difference every day.

#CleanLM gives them another reason to be proud and it is absolutely crucial to ensure they are aware of this pledge, so they are able to engage in the delivery of the program or in the communication about it to their networks.

I think it is fair to say that they are the most important stakeholders and key enablers for us as an organization to achieve the target but also the reputation benefit that comes by being a pioneer. Just imagine the impact if we manage to engage 10,000 people as green ambassadors inspiring others to follow our lead!

What did you learn during the process?
In this process we were quite concerned about the level of detail and complexity of our game would be too advanced for the limited time we had available. The audience was the top leaders in the business, so stakes were high – as would be the exposure if we failed.

We spent a LOT of energy on wording and simplifying the concept and content over several iterations until we were satisfied. It was a matter of finding that delicate balance where the audience is intrigued and challenged but not overwhelmed while maintaining some of the complexity from real life in the game.

This experience actually reflects one of the most important lessons I have learned on my 10+ years in corporate communications. When you have really invested that extra thought and care into your content and campaign you can create something with long durability and relevance which ultimately becomes a recognized franchise in the company’s communications mix.

When people start adopting and adapting it to their own communications purposes, you have really succeeded. We have done that with our first sustainability campaign featuring four mascots – The Sustainables – which were introduced five years ago but still going strong and even getting new family members from time to time. With #CleanLM we aim to create a strong internal franchise again but this time, the potential for using it externally has been considered almost equally important. We are on to something greater than ourselves and inspiring others is a huge part of measuring our success.

What is your best advice/tip to other employee communicators?
Take your audience seriously and invest the necessary time and care in learning what works with them. Do pilots, focus groups, or test runs with small samples of employees and be ready to adjust according to what you learn. Then dare to challenge and tweak to surprise and inspire! And finally, consider how you measure success already when you start designing your campaign. We all want to be able to show that our work made the intended difference.

You can read more about Lene’s activating leaders and employees in the carbon neutral agenda in her LinkedIn blog post: Watch 130 leaders go carbon neutral in 30 minutes! (LinkedIn, February 23, 2018)

‘On the Mic’ is a series of blog posts that invite internal communication professionals to share their take on employee communication, their view on trends within the field and what rocks their boat. Feel free to send us tips on who should be ‘On the Mic’ next.


video smartphone employee communication

Make great corporate videos with your smartphone

Video smartphone employee communication
Video smartphone employee communication

Make great corporate videos with your smartphone

Video series: No more dark and blurry smartphone videos. Here are seven simple tips to create excellent employee videos with your smartphone.

By:  Simon Quintal, Senior Creative Advisor & Video Specialist (February 25,  2017)

You are probably already creating short videos with your smartphone to share on the intranet or other platforms. Then you know that the authenticity of the smartphone footage is a major advantage of the media, but it indeed needs to be dozed right. Bad light-setting, background noice, and unflattering angles always set authenticity at a risk.

Fortunately, it is quite easy to get basics in place. Here are seven tips from Open’s video team to make sure the basics are in place the next time

1. Show excitement
The best recordings are those showing real excitement. Feel free to smile, laugh, and have fun in the shots – and try not to read from a script when you are speaking to the camera.

2. Cover footage
Get a lot of cover footage and avoid loooong takes of someone talking. Cover footage makes it easier to edit the video so it becomes more dynamic – and ultimately a better story. Long takes can end up as boring, and mostly it also requires a lot of editing.

3. Keep the camera rolling
When your shot is over keep recording for an extra 3-5 seconds. It makes it much easier to edit afterwards. Remember, you can always cut away, but never add.

4. Clear sound
Stay close to the camera, but no more than 1.5 meters. Speak clearly and be aware of not speaking too fast or with a low voice. Make sure there is no background noise in interview scenes, e.g. avoid outside recordings that have wind or car noise.

5. Background
Any background will do but feel free to be creative. For maximum depth stand a few meters away from the background. And of course, be aware not to show any confidential information.

6. Light
Make sure there is enough light in the person’s face – if the face is too dark, the shot is – with all respect – useless. Also, try to avoid direct sunlight in the person’s eyes and never film directly against the sun (e.g. towards a window).

7. Angle of smartphone
Finally, always hold your smartphone horizontally (wide screen), and steady when recording.

video smartphone recording employee communication

Now, you are ready to make your next engaging employee video. Have fun!

Video is more than a tool and pressing the right buttons. Video is visual storytelling. In the next weeks, we have a special focus on corporate video and the impact videos can have on your employee communication. This article is the second in this series. Stay tuned.


Creative shower: A quick guide to the creative process

Open_Creative_Shower_Top_image
Open_Creative_Shower_Top_image

Jump into the creative shower: A quick guide to the creative process

Have you ever been asked to ‘think out of the box’ and your only thought was: How? Then you are not alone. Great news: Use these four steps and become creative too.

By: Betina Sørensen, Senior Creative Advisor (February 18, 2018)

Some people are born creatives. Mozart, Picasso, Lady Gaga, Mark Zuckerberg, you name it (or this is at least how we like to think of their innovative abilities). But most of us are not (though Rasmus definitely is). Luckily for those of us struggling to think out of that comfortable, familiar, and sometimes annoying box, creativity is a skill you can train to master. Just like every other skill.

There are a variety of techniques and methods that can help you practice your creativity.

In this infographic, we have collected a few methods on how to come up with ideas and refine them. It is kind of like stepping into a shower; once you turn on your creativity you will experience a true shower of ideas that all call for grooming.

And once you are at it, why not print the infographic and hang it somewhere to remind you and your colleagues of training your ‘being a little creative here’-skills.

Guide_to_creativity_Open_Mic_Open_pdf_visual