12 months ago, we were appointed by a large-scale recruitment consultancy to provide PR and Content Marketing services. They, like many agencies, had ambitious growth plans for the year ahead. But they faced two key challenges.
First, their consultant retention levels were low. And second, growth over the previous 12 months lagged behind the targets they had set.
On the face of it, there was no reason why this was. However, it became clear within our first week of working together where the problem lay: there was no communication between the top and bottom of the business.
Setting KPIs and driving your consultants to hit their sales targets is fine. But if they don’t know what direction the business is going and the impact their role plays in achieiving the agency’s goals, there is little chance of creating a working environment where everyone is ‘in it together.’
Although the contribution of it’s consultants to the overall performance of the business has never being clearer than it is now, there remains a significant number of agencies remiss of an effective internal communications strategy. Yet several studies have shown a direct correlation between having a one in place and improved financial performance.
In fact, according to one study, those agencies and businesses who are highly effective at internal communication are 1.7 times as likely to outperform their peers.
So there should be no reason not to implement an internal communication strategy within your consultancy. Here’s 10 reasons why you should consider doing so:
- Consultants are more engaged and feel part of the decision-making process.
- All employees can identify with the organisation’s values and goals which in turn will make them feel they are ‘making a difference’.
- Consultants who are engaged are proven to increase their efforts and efficiencies, which positively impacts on the agency’s bottom line.
- Consultants will feel a loyalty to an organisation and are more likely to remain with their employer for the longer term, which keeps staff turnover and recruitment costs to a minimum.
- Inherent silo mentalities are broken down and effective inter-departmental working relationships are fostered, which creates an environment of shared responsibility and shared purpose – all of which will result in the sharing of best practice and improved business performance.
- Workplace conflict caused by ambiguity is reduced through clear messaging and communication of ideas.
- Employees are empowered to discuss, share and contribute ideas that can have both a direct and indirect impact on how the organisation performs through the development of a supportive and knowledge-sharing corporate culture.
- All employees can articulate the organisation’s mission, vision, values and goals and ensure that these key principles underpin all that they do in the work environment.
- Employees are motivated by the ‘bigger picture’ – they can see where the organisation is heading and they understand the role that they and their teams play in enabling it to reach its targets.
- Senior teams are better placed to review, assess and measure the success of their internal communications strategy to date and benchmark it against improved business performance.
Without an effective internal communications strategy, organisations risk losing talent to their competitors, devalue their employee value proposition, increase the prevalence of a silo mentality persisting within the organisation which reduces cohesion, and they will have a workforce that is relatively misinformed and ignorant of where the organisation is going and their role within it.
All of which will result in a breakdown of communication and a toxic corporate culture struggling to find its way.