Communication can influence employee engagement
- The number one role of internal communications is the line of sight it can create, said David Stoneham, Director of Communications at Nokia.
According to Stoneham internal communications is today’s real challenge. Compared to external communications, employee communications – as they call internal comms at Nokia – is more complex and thus also more fascinating, he said.
Mr Stoneham spoke about the significance of internal communications at the IBC seminar at Aalto University on 16 February 2012. The seminar was organized by the Department of Communication of the School of Economics and the Corporate Relations Unit.
New research serves organizations and employees
Dr Mary Welch from the University of Central Lancashire addressed the issue from the academic perspective. She is an internationally acknowledged researcher of internal communications, who has in her work modeled the relationship between internal communications and employee engagement.
Dr.Welch pointed out that the employment engagement is changeable, and it can be influenced, for example by different ways of communicating. Employee engagement includes three aspects: emotional, physical and cognitive.
- New research in the field serves both organizations’ interests and employee needs. However, it’s good to remember that employees as individuals differ as to their preferences for particular kinds of communication, Welch said.
Improving the communication of line management
Stoneham emphasized that a positive mindset increases employee engagement.
- Heart, head and hands must be aligned with your work. Head means what, heart means why and hands how the job is done. Emotional commitment to work can be even four times stronger than rational commitment.
Stoneham said that the impact of line management and team leaders on internal communications is often forgotten in companies.
- Nokia organizes communication seminars for the line management, where the significance of communication is focused on. The seminars help them to really understand the key messages of the company and to avoid repeating them like parrots, said Stoneham.
The IBC Evening Seminar is an annual event to promote dialogue between corporate communications practitioners, Aalto University researchers and students of communication.