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Internal Communication Blue Paper

Internal Communication Blue Paper

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Published by 4imprint
When 30 Coca-Cola employees visited the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, they weren’t there to participate in the events. Nor were they there to sight-see, stock beverages or handle the company’s
public relations. They were there with one mission, and one mission only: to blog their fingers off.
When 30 Coca-Cola employees visited the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, they weren’t there to participate in the events. Nor were they there to sight-see, stock beverages or handle the company’s
public relations. They were there with one mission, and one mission only: to blog their fingers off.

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Published by: 4imprint on Jun 30, 2010
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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03/03/2011

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InternalCommunication
 
© 2008 4imprint, Inc. All rights reserved
Operation:Communication
Harnessing the power of strategic internalcommunication planning
When 30 Coca-Cola employees visited the 2008 Summer Olympic Gamesin Beijing, they weren’t there to participate in the events. Nor were theythere to sight-see, stock beverages or handle the company’spublic relations.They were there with one mission, and one mission only: to blog their fingers off.Longtime Olympic Games sponsor Coca-Cola supplemented its media empire thisyear by adding blogging to the usual advertising, public relations and marketingmix. All Coke employees who traveled to China to pursue their blogging effortswere even nominated and selected by their peers.Petro Kacur, senior manager of marketing communications for Coke, said the teammembers were sent to Beijing to enjoy the Games and blog about their experiencesfor fellow co-workers to read, rather than the traditional external blog approach.
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Talk about refreshing internal communications. (Pun obviously intended.)
Shifting focus
For many organizations, it’s easy to fall to the strong arm of externalcommunication. Its revenue generation and measurable results frombuilding brand awareness, pitching the press and selling products makeit a “no-brainer.”However, external communications isn’t the only side to the communicationscoin. Equally important to the bottom line, internal communications which is often overlooked or not given the same level of credence.According to Tonya Bacon, director at Strategic Communications Group, “…instituting a comprehensive internal communications program is one of the mostvaluable ways to encourage employees to become stakeholders in the company
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,”adding to other important factors such as employee perks and an engaged workenvironment.
1 The Cycle. Rose Gordon. “Coke employees blog from Beijing Games.” Press release. 08 Aug. 2008. 28 Aug. 2008<http://thecycle.prweekblogs.com/2008/08/08/coke-employees-blog-from-beijing-games/ >. 2 Bacon, Tonya. “Sleepwalking Through the Workday: How Internal Communications Can Engage Employees.”MarketingProfs. 17 Oct. 2006. 28 Aug. 2008 <http://www.marketingprofs.com/ >.
 
© 2008 4imprint, Inc. All rights reserved
Strategic internal communication plans offer many benefits to organizations acrossvaried industries, including:Increased productivityHigher probability of achieving organizational goalsAbility to approach situations, problems or crises proactivelyMore effective and responsive customer serviceEmpowered employees who take stock in your organizationA better workplace understanding of organizationalvalues and purposeSmarter decision-making on all levels, reducing theneed for micro-managingReduced day-to-day conflict between team membersHigher employee retention ratesAnother proven benefit is a reduced chance of data leaks. A recent Ponemon Institutesurvey for Microsoft found that 74 percent of companies that admitted to poor internalcollaboration between security, marketing and privacy managers had experienced oneor more significant data breaches in the past two years.Conversely, only 29 percent of companies who said to have good collaboration reportedone or more breaches in the same period.
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Translation? When employees aren’tcommunicating cross-departmentally, security and privacy can suffer.
Common beginnings
Before we delve into formulating a winning plan that yields results, it’s important tounderstand the cause of most internal communications problems. Some of the mostcommon beginnings of internal issues arise from eight main mentalities
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:1. If I know it, then everyone else must know it.2. We challenge bureaucracy. Logging rules in writing can be seen as a signof this and should be avoided.3. I think I told everyone or, someone or …?4. They’ve interpreted exactly what I was trying to convey.5. We’re too busy with bigger problems to have to listen to each other.6. So, what’s to talk about? Everything’s good. News only happens aroundhere in a crisis.7. There’s lots of data, but not much actual information to disseminate.8. There’s no point in telling you something unless I need your opinion on it.Building on one or more of these eight mentalities, organizations are set on the road
3 “Data leaks result from poor internal communication.” TechTaxi. 24 Oct. 2007. 28 Aug. 2008<http://techtaxi.blogspot.com/2007/10/data-leaks-result-from-poor-internal.html >. 4 McNamara, Carter. “Basics in Internal Organizational Communications.” Free Management Library. 2008. Authenticity Consulting, LLC. 28 Aug. 2008 <http://www.managementhelp.org/mrktng/org_cmm.htm>.

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