Partnering for success

Communicators need to make the case for authentic and humane communications at the workplace

A model for communicating in a hyperconnected world / Source: Aniisu Varghese

How can communicators involve and inspire employees to be themselves and yet identify with the organisation’s goals? What will help stakeholders view communicators as partners in progress? Answering these questions and balancing expectations in a digitally-connected world is often a challenge: let’s make the case for authentic and humane communications at the workplace that enhances organisational communication and effectiveness.

To be viewed as a valued business communication partner and to engage employees in a hyperconnected world means revisiting and reinventing current communication practices. Understanding the implications of the new world of work and the workplace can lead to improved approaches that communicators take while framing suitable interventions and engaging stakeholders.

Consider these findings from research reports -

  • 60 per cent of communicators cite information overload most frequently as a source of concern (The Future of Corporate Communications, Brunswick, 2015)
  • Interruptions eat up 28 per cent of the workday (Death by Information Overload, Harvard Business Review, 2009)
  • One in five leaders expect to reshape their business “radically” in response to hyperconnectivity. (The Hyperconnected Economy: Phase 2 Hyperconnected Organisations, The Economist Intelligence Unit Limited, 2015)
  • The demographics of the workforce are shifting; by 2020, there will be five generations working side by side. (The Global Information Technology Report 2012, World Economic Forum)
  • Employees who could choose their own work settings were 1.5 times more likely to work in a balanced environment, and also report higher scores across performance indicators. (Asia Workplace Survey, Genslet, 2016)
  • 83 per cent of CEOs think employees are more productive due to technology (CEO pulse on connectivity, PwC, 2015)

Risks and opportunities

In a VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity) world where people are unfamiliar with the situations they are in or can’t predict the outcomes of their own actions organisations need to do more to help employees cope with changes at the workplace and elsewhere. Democratisation of the workplace and technological empowerment of employees brings with it opportunities and challenges. Accessibility, collaboration, information richness, interactivity, always-on experiences and real-time documentation are some of the facets of this new phenomenon. It also brings with it perils of information leaks, misuse and reputation risks.

The growing influence of social, digital and mobile communication is seen as one of the biggest changes faced by communicators. Apart from information overload, communicators also face diminishing attention spans and the prospect of managing expectations of multiple generations at the workplace.

To be viewed as a valued business communication partner and to engage employees in a hyperconnected world means revisiting and reinventing current communication practices. Understanding the implications of the new world of work and the workplace can lead to improved approaches that communicators take while framing suitable interventions and engaging stakeholders.

Consider these findings from research reports -

  • 60 per cent of communicators cite information overload most frequently as a source of concern (The Future of Corporate Communications, Brunswick, 2015)
  • Interruptions eat up 28 per cent of the workday (Death by Information Overload, Harvard Business Review, 2009)
  • One in five leaders expect to reshape their business “radically” in response to hyperconnectivity. (The Hyperconnected Economy: Phase 2 Hyperconnected Organisations, The Economist Intelligence Unit Limited, 2015)
  • The demographics of the workforce are shifting; by 2020, there will be five generations working side by side. (The Global Information Technology Report 2012, World Economic Forum)
  • Employees who could choose their own work settings were 1.5 times more likely to work in a balanced environment, and also report higher scores across performance indicators. (Asia Workplace Survey, Genslet, 2016)
  • 83 per cent of CEOs think employees are more productive due to technology (CEO pulse on connectivity, PwC, 2015)

Risks and opportunities

In a VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity) world where people are unfamiliar with the situations they are in or can’t predict the outcomes of their own actions organisations need to do more to help employees cope with changes at the workplace and elsewhere. Democratisation of the workplace and technological empowerment of employees brings with it opportunities and challenges. Accessibility, collaboration, information richness, interactivity, always-on experiences and real-time documentation are some of the facets of this new phenomenon. It also brings with it perils of information leaks, misuse and reputation risks.

The growing influence of social, digital and mobile communication is seen as one of the biggest changes faced by communicators. Apart from information overload, communicators also face diminishing attention spans and the prospect of managing expectations of multiple generations at the workplace.