One of the biggest misconceptions of leaders, managers, and even marketers across organizations is that they think of internal communications as a role reserved for junior people. Marketers consider it a stepping stone to the big leagues, marketing to other businesses or a target market.
Most leaders think that internal communications are about rolling out newsletters, developing a content strategy, or worse, “writing content.” Of course, they don’t know what they’re talking about or the significance of internal communication in an organizational context.
I believe an internal communication specialist is just as important as an external marketer. I would argue that it’s probably the most critical marketing role in an organization because it caters to the most important audience of any organization – its employees.
An employee base is the backbone of any organization, regardless of its external marketing prowess. They make up the culture of an organization. Hence, keeping them engaged is critical, failing which companies find themselves struggling to retain talent, losing them to the competition.
So, instinctively, leaders summon their managers to put together an “internal comms” strategy to keep the employees engaged – a band-aid approach that seldom works. Why? Because internal communications need to be just as thorough as a company’s market position or a long-term strategy.
That might mean they need to hire someone senior to think through and implement a short to mid to long-term strategy instead of assigning random tasks to a junior marketer. This also means that the leadership needs to ensure that the specialist gets a seat at the table, should they care enough to communicate the organizational vision to the employees.
Communication is a strategic imperative. Not a one-off or random task limited to creating content or sending off an email or a newsletter. There’s more to organizational communication than most people think. It’s much more nuanced than understanding what communication means or having good communication skills.