When is the last time you communicated an important piece of information that no one remembered? It’s frustrating and many times, the effects can be significant.
As a former HR Director, sometimes I felt my communication style was the rapid transit blasting info at people as fast as possible. Other times it was like a steam engine, huffing and puffing along. I often wondered if either method was actually working, but I can tell you this: creative help from one of my vendors was ALWAYS appreciated.
Today, I’m sharing 3 ways you can WOW your HR contacts with communication wins. Maybe these will spark a new idea for you…
1. Ask about their processes
The benefits professionals and vendors who took time to learn about our company, team and communication processes really stood out. Why? By listening to how we worked, they could often uncover communication needs and suggest ways to help. Questions you might ask include…
- How are employees onboarded?
- How often are employee training events held?
- What ongoing communications do they send to employees about benefits? About other company news and update?
- What communication methods are utilized? (email, intranet, internal messaging system, newsletters, break-room communications)
- Do they use department or team meetings to communicate company-wide information?
As you discover how a group communicates, you can suggest ways to latch onto an existing process or recommend an effective approach that’s missing.
For example, as an HR Director, I held weekly new hire orientations. One vendor offered to attend these ongoing meetings. I was happy to give her time to explain an optional benefit in detail, distribute materials and get employees started.
It was just as helpful when vendors supplied me with helpful resources I didn’t have to create on my own. Listening to your HR contacts with an ear for communication opportunities can make you their superhero.
2. Think critically and be creative
Maybe your client has “tried everything” you’ve recommended and still needs another idea or two. When you know your product inside and out, creating a little space to step back and evaluate what’s been done and what results are yet to be achieved can spark a clever idea. Show you care by offering up new ideas.
We did this when we rolled out our freshbenies app. Prior to the app, we already communicated with employees in a number of ways as part of the freshbenies Member Engagement System. This meant we already had email addresses for most members. But, a freshbenies membership includes the entire immediate family. How could we educate dependents about their services through freshbenies? The app offered the main member the opportunity to provide additional family member email addresses, so they receive our communications, too.
Check out this article for a few engagement tips and ideas to bring the fun.
3. Make it personal
In addition to understanding the company’s processes, make it a goal to know their culture, too. Most HR contacts will welcome the chance to discuss this with you.
Also, look for opportune times to “show up” so you can interact with employees. One of my vendors would drive a serious distance to spend the day in my training room and meet with employees who had their benefit to ensure they took full advantage of it. Other employees who simply needed to ask a question or two could also stop by to get the info they needed. This built employee trust and I definitely appreciated the interest and investment in my team.
When you help your HR contacts utilize various forms of communication throughout the year, it multiplies their time to handle other things while keeping your products and services top-of-mind for employees — and that means engagement, a win-win :-)
Now it’s your turn! What creative communication strategies have you used with your clients? Comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.