In part 1 of this post, we examined the signs of a toxic workplace and dove into key areas of focus, that allow a company to build a healthy corporate culture through communications.
Those pillars include:
- Corporate policies
- Internal Communications
- External Communications
In part 2, we’ll explore the remaining two concepts by reviewing the importance of cultivating internal and external communications.
Internal Communications: Get Transparent
In a digital age where many of us now work from home or in a hybrid home office model, the likelihood of a breakdown in communication increases. Internal communications at every level should be consistent and transparent.
Employees appreciate and value transparency top to bottom.
A lack of transparency and consistent communication can affect trust, morale, and overall engagement with your people, often leading to increased turnover. Many companies will even go so far as to send out employee engagement surveys, which can be an insightful and useful way to ‘pulse check’. However, if the feedback does not result in a change or tangible actions, employees will still feel as though their voices are unheard.
If left untended, gaps can also occur between employees and their direct reports. To avoid these disparities, it is essential to ensure roles and departmental responsibilities are clearly defined and maintained. There are a couple of benefits in this approach:
- Employees are set up for success when they clearly know what is expected in their role, empowering them to focus on their work and goals.
- Operational efficiency is cultivated with minimized occurrences of redundancy or confusion.
Between departments, the lines of communication must consistently remain open. To achieve this, you may even need to do a ‘reset’ of expectations. Dialogue between teams needs to be ongoing and consistent, in alignment with the company and procedures.
External Communications: Be what you want to appear
External communications are linked to your brand – how a business presents itself to clients, customers, and even potential employees. In 2022, it is essential that a business has a significant digital footprint. This includes more than a well-designed website. Social media can also offer some of the most effective marketing tools to extend brand reach and promote company values and culture.
To further evaluate the public perception and external reputation, a company must also consider the following questions:
- Is this company regarded as a place employees want to work at?
- Is this company a revolving door of high turnover?
- Does this company value both its employees and customers?
- Is this company utilizing digital platforms to promote its brand, goals, and values, as well as providing meaningful content?
As Warren Buffet once said, “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that you’ll do things differently”.
Putting it all together
As stated in part 1, repairing a toxic workplace is not impossible; the key is to acknowledge the toxicity and make a concerted effort to heal the organization. After acknowledging the toxicity and recognizing that a broken system needs to be repaired, the next step is to implement the change. It’s one thing to recognize the work that needs to be done, it is another to act.
The benefits of time and energy spent cultivating a strong and healthy culture through various communications channels can be seen through employees at every level of the organization. Internally, employees are engaged and motivated. Externally, the company projects a positive and successful reputation to potential clients or prospective employees. Ultimately that should be the goal of any company, to promote and foster a healthy and balanced corporate culture.