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Category: Employee Communications

Issue management: it’s about strategy, not reaction

Building strength in issue management is difficult. It’s part discipline, part knowledge and part instinct, and tends to be a skill learned through experience. There’s really no substitute for learning first-hand in the trenches to gain insight on what works, what doesn’t and why. There is, however, one overarching principle of greatest importance to the…

The intersection between internal communications and anthropology

You already know that internal communication and employee engagement are critical to any organization’s success. You know that getting employees to connect and co-create may be part of your job as a communications professional. But you may not have realized that to do that effectively, you may also need to be a dedicated creative anthropologist…

Authenticity + Faces = Trust

This bit of arithmetic is about the preconditions for cultivating an atmosphere of corporate trust that makes for successful internal communications. Much lip service is paid to the importance of internal communications—but that talk isn’t always matched by follow-through in the areas of authenticity and in-person contact. To be credible and useful, messaging of an…

Who cares about your communications evaluation results?

It may look like a flip title, but it’s not. Whether you’ve done a major communications strategy or a smaller project, the truth is that lots of people will care about what evaluation shows the results of your efforts to have been. However, not everyone will care about all aspects of your evaluation in the…

Research Your Way to Rocking Communications

Research is probably one of the most under-rated areas in which a strategic communicator can really shine. It may seem odd to consider the proposition that as a communicator, you should also be a researcher. Aren’t the researchers those folks in other parts of the building, or outside your organization altogether? Isn’t your job to…

Mapping Out Your Audience Terrain

Communications is all about knowing your audiences: who are the key audiences you must reach in order to achieve your objective; where they are; and what kinds of messages will be of interest to them. If you’re working in the private sector, it’s relatively easy to define who will be the key audiences shaping purchasing…

Plan to Keep Cool in a Crisis

You’ve likely already experienced the real truth that panic isn’t the best stimulus for sound communications strategizing. To the contrary, the time to start preparing for a crisis is well before your organization is in crisis mode. When a crisis does hit, you’ll handle it with infinitely more calm and confidence if you’ve already developed a…

Communications Planning: The Principles

Here are my all-time Top 5 Principles for strategic communications planning: Communications should be focused on results, rather than activity. Often, communicators are in the business of generating “stuff” – speeches, media releases, and promotional materials. The communications function is much more effective when it is driven to generate results, such as increased rates of…

Why do Most Communications Strategies Fail?

As a strategic communications junkie, one of the saddest realities to face is that I’m convinced that most communications strategies fail. Yup, you read that right. The majority of communications strategies fail, because they never get implemented. Overwhelmingly, the reason is simple: Because the strategy was written as a document, rather than being the results…

What to Do When ‘An Issue’ Arises

Issue management is one of the most high-profile elements of strategic communications.  It’s about forging a deliberate response to a challenge facing your organization, ranging from a relatively minor day-to-day incident to a full-blown crisis. But it’s not, strictly speaking, just a communications function. Rather, it’s an activity in which communications leadership marshals many different…