In recent years, there has been increased attention towards employees in different organizations around the world. Organizations have over time realized that the success of their businesses lies to a large extent in the hands of the employees. It has been found that effective employee communication has great positive effects on the turnover of a business (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.). Effective employee communication has also been linked to improved financial performance in many organizations. Employers must also be careful to be dynamic when implementing internal communication strategies because the business environment is rapidly changing.
The strategy needed by Bosworth for communicating change at Westwood Publishing must be friendly to the employees to ensure effectiveness and efficiency. First, Bosworth has to embrace a more frequent face to face meetings approach for Westwood Publishing. This will present a good opportunity for the management to convey any changes on key issues affecting the organization to the employees. These meetings provide employees with an opportunity to ask questions and give suggestions in an open forum. Telephone and video conferencing should be used to ensure that all employees can participate irrespective of their geographic location in the organization (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.).
Secondly they can propose online communication to Bosworth as part of the strategy to be used to communicate change in Westwood Publishing. Intranets provide a fast means by which the management of companies can pass key management initiatives and changes to the employees. This mode also serves the important role of enabling employees to share and interact and share views on the various changes introduced by the management. The intranet mode must, however, be thoughtfully used to ensure effectiveness of its use. The use of portal technology can serve as a good means of ensuring that the information is easy to find. The homepage of the intranet needs regular refreshing to motivate the employees always to visit it for the most recent information (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.).
Employee oriented publications can also be used as a means of communicating change to employees in Westwood Publication. These print publications will serve to help in ensuring that even the employees without email access can access the information being passed by the management. For effectiveness, the management has to ensure that the publications are more interesting for the employees. The information passed through these publications must be realistic and must create trust in the minds of the employees (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.).
There are certain ways in which the changes in workforce affect Cassidy’s way of thinking about communicating the new policy. The workforce has changed in terms of values and needs. Cassidy has to consider the fact that the workforce now has a better education, has expectations that are much higher than before and are in need of more information about the companies for which they work.
Cassidy must take into consideration the fact that there are many changes in the business environment which have led to many changes in the workforce. The workforce is now filled with feelings of paranoia, anger and fear (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.). When communicating the new policy, he must know that now more than ever the workforce the workforce has a great distrust of the management and companies at large. The workforce is now more concerned with issues of whether they are being engaged in the direction of the company. The increasing complexity of the business environment is increasing the pressure on the employee and this in effect greatly affects the way changes are communicated to the workforce (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.).
Cassidy must also think from the perspective that the workforce now needs to be included in the talks that lead to changes in organizations. The communication process thus ought to be a two-way process. Timely feedback is also expected from the side of the management. Cassidy must understand that failure to include employees from all levels in the decision-making process can lead to a feeling of alienation in the workforce and ultimately rejection of the change being communicated (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.).
The manner in which communication to employees at Westwood Publishing is structured appears to be overtaken by time and clearly needs revamping. The revisions must take into consideration the current trends in the business environment and the changes in the workforce. I would advise Cassidy to propose major changes in the communication structure to make it more up to date and increase its effectiveness at the same time.
Firstly, I would advise him to ensure that the frequency of the outreaches to employees be increased. Instead of annual meetings the company holds, the meetings should be made quarterly or even more frequent. The meetings should also include presentations from the employees rather than from just Bosworth and the top management team. Video conferencing should also be used in the meetings to cater for the employees who do not make it to the meetings. Secondly, the company’s intranet needs to be updated more frequently to enable employees to access information more reliably and timely (‘Internal Communications’, n.d.). Finally, Cassidy could push for more exciting and captivating publications to replace newsletters and formal memos used to pass information to the workforce. Instead of dropping the publications on the employees’ desks, the captivating publications could be delivered to the individual employee’s home.
Internal Communications, (Chapter Seven), 183-202.