What is Internal Communication? A Beginner’s Perspective

What is Internal Communication? A Beginner’s Perspective

It’s been an interesting week for Peppermint Fish. We’ve been lucky enough to host GCSE student Sophie for her week of work experience. I asked Sophie why she’d chosen to spend time with Peppermint Fish. She told me she’d been inspired by the idea of making podcasts and other types of online content, so she was a perfect fit for us!

Since our expertise lies mainly in Internal Communications, I thought it would be helpful for Sophie to get an understanding of what that is and why it’s important, on the first day of her working experience. Sophie got to work straight away, armed with a short list of recommended sources. The summary she produced was of such good quality, I’m very pleased to share it here. 

(Note that Sophie has listed the sources of her research at the end of the article)

Over to Sophie:

Internal Communication

Internal communication is the way a company interacts with their employees and how employees interact with their company. It’s  the planned use of communication actions to systematically influence the knowledge, attitudes and behaviour of current employees for effective communication between an organisation and its staff.

Why is Internal Communication important to a company?

Effective internal communication within a company is important as it means the people inside the company work more efficiently to achieve their goals. In order to do this there should be a shared meaning and understanding within the company. It’s important that an organisation cares about their employees’ views and opinions. It’s also critical for employees to have more of an understanding of their goals, so the company should take steps to make their contribution clear to them.  Companies who take this on board are better able to encourage their employees to be engaged and deliver their best efforts.

Woman smiling while using smartphone

As technology advances, one of the interesting ways a business can communicate with their employees is through social media. It has grown rapidly in the last decade and many employees have grown up using social media. That means they rely on having many interactions everyday, so they expect that from their work. 

Social media is an extremely helpful way to communicate with employees, however it is hard to control. For example misunderstandings can take place when communicating through social media. It is important there is efficient internal communication within a company to solve any issues.

Employees are expecting a lot more interaction

Sophie West

A company might frequently change their goals to remain competitive. This can demotivate staff. It is harder to keep employees on track during these circumstances, which is why it is important to have an effective level of internal communication. Employees are expecting a lot more interaction from their employers. They do not just want to be ‘told’ something, they expect more involvement in decision-making. 

Having that effective level of internal communication within your business also enriches the lives of employees. This can also affect the way employees treat customers. It is important to keep a happy, positive workplace and this can be done by having a good level of internal communication. This ensures everyone is comfortable asking questions to understand their role and is happy at work. This will help your business, as ultimately the best way to advertise your company is having happy customers and happy employees.

Interesting facts about Internal Communication

Here are some of the facts I found interesting during my research:
  • Internal communication is among the fastest growing specialisations in public relations and communication management.
  • There are now more than 25,000 professionals in the private sector based around internal communications.
  • Internal communication integrates human resources, management and marketing.
  • Employees who feel like they are genuinely listened to by their managers are 5 times more likely to have more enthusiasm during work and 21 times more likely to feel committed to their job than people who do not feel that they are listened to.
  • Companies with highly engaged employees have an improved operating income compared to companies who do not have highly engaged employees.

Sources

  • https://www.allthingsic.com/
  • https://staffbase.com/blog/7-reasons-why-internal-communication-is-important-for-success/
  • https://www.ioic.org.uk/about-ioic/the-ic-profession
  • https://visual.ly/community/infographic/business/7-facts-you-did-not-know-about-internal-communication
  • https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0363811111002141

Article by Sophie West

Thank you so much for sharing a summary of your research into internal communication, Sophie. You’ve picked out some excellent points and I think your section about the impact of social media on employee expectation is really interesting.

 Wishing you all the best for your very bright future.

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