On May 26, IABC/Toronto hosted a webinar in partnership with Gallagher to discuss the 2021/22 State of the Sector report on internal communication and employee experience trends.
Mandy Gibson, President of IABC/Toronto and Senior Manager of Internal Communications at KPMG, introduced the session with featured guest speaker Chris Lee, VP Employee Communication & Experience, Canada at Gallagher.
The report is the definitive global survey of the internal communications profession, informed by 1,300+ responses from communications and HR professionals around the world and brought to you by Gallagher’s Employee Experience and Communication team.
Chris detailed the key trends, priorities and challenges facing the sector while highlighting strategies to engage and retain employees. He and Mandy discussed how internal communicators must be deliberate in how they create stories, so employees experience the organization’s values and culture in a meaningful and impactful way.
The top priorities of survey respondents include:
- Engage teams around purpose, vision and strategy
- Adapt channel strategies to a hybrid working environment
- Support people managers to “be effective stewards of messaging”
The key challenges observed:
- Disengaged employees
- Lack of capacity/ human resources in teams
- Lack of analytics and measurement
Chris suggested combating these challenges by treating people as more than just “resources with KPIs.” Improved employee experience leads to retention, higher morale and increased productivity.
Some key takeaways for creating a best-in-class employee experience include:
- People are complex with their own needs, desires, emotions and opinions. Leadership must evolve from a command and control model to a more empathetic approach that supports each individual.
- Invest in employee wellbeing as it is key to the future of your business
Equip people managers with tools and skills to establish a trusting and open relationship with their employees in order to create a psychologically safe environment.