Leaders Should Communicate the Organization’s Performance

Have you ever noticed how quickly employees seem to know something about a change before anyone has begun to communicate what is happening? Even in the best of organizations, the slightest change creates havoc because people don’t know the whole story, or how it will impact them personally, and they feel insulted because they are often the last to hear the news.

According to a 2018 Gallup Poll based on a random sample of over 30,000 full- and part-time U.S. employees, 53% of workers are not engaged and 13% are just plain unhappy. That 53% do the minimum required but will quickly leave their company for a slightly better offer. This is our workforce today, in a time of scarcity for talent in many industries.

So, whose job is it in your business to communicate the big picture (culture, vision, and business goals, as well as major changes and crisis)? The leaders, defined as the CEO, president, and officers of the organization, though I will be the first to say, any “leaders” in the organization are those who lead well.  In this case, those who create or respond to the big picture directly impact the results of communicating the organization’s performance.

I recently presented this overview to a group of leaders in Hampton Roads and was so encouraged by the interest and input for getting this core responsibility right! There are many reasons why leaders don’t communicate the performance of the company such as fear of saying the wrong message or not understanding the value of communicating performance throughout the entire organization, but taking the time to focus on this competency will make a significant difference next time there is a crisis or a downturn your industry.

When I watch TV, if I am not watching the news, I am totally wrapped in a mystery, murder, adventure so I am going to ask you to consider how you can nail your narrative with CSI! Here are three aspects of creating messages for communicating important information:

CREDIBLE: People need to believe your narrative. A recent SHRM 2017 Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement study showed that while 61% of employees rated trust as very important to their job satisfaction, only 33% were very satisfied with their level of trust toward their organizations.

SIMPLE: Many strategic narratives fail because they are too long or too complex.

INSPIRING: Why should people care? How does this impact their work? Keep in mind, that people make decisions every minute based on their hearts and their minds.

The faster the world becomes, the more we need leaders to be master communicators, identifying the gaps, monitoring effectiveness, mentoring with model behaviors, and evaluate the outcomes. This ongoing effort creates the strategy for a leader’s narrative…the messages which clarify and motivate for a cohesive understanding of the big picture AND all the activity which impacts the bottom line, turnover rates, productivity and much more.

If you would like to discuss with me in more depth about your specific challenges in communicating performance, please call to arrange for a complimentary consultation: 757-513-8633 or susan@managingcommunications.com.