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Even Dream employers should communicate better

A great report came out recently looking at the Dream employers in Australia and New Zealand (Insync Surveys and RedBalloon.com.au), analysing what makes them the dream employers.

There is a great deal of consistency in the findings about what people are looking for in their work and how the Dream employers deliver on these parts.

The top 3 reasons for choosing the Dream employers are:

  1. Pay, benefits and conditions
  2. Work-life balance
  3. Culture

This is further supported by research that proves that a people centric organisation is key to gaining a competitive advantage in the employment market (Pfeffer 1998).

The research shows that culture is so important yet at the same time it reveals that only 45% of workers are satisfied with their current job.  And the top 3 things that they want to see improved are:

  • Systems and Processes
  • Communication
  • Pay and Benefits

In the Dream Employer report James Garriock, CEO Insync Surveys explains Employees want to know their work is meaningful and connected to the organisation’s goals. They value being respected and informed about things that matter to them. Being included in decisions is empowering. Effective communication sends the message that an organisation cares about and is committed to employees, which is the single biggest driver of engagement,” Employees look for improved communications.

What strikes me from about this list is the disproportionate money, time, effort and priority that organisations give to these 3 things, with communication usually being the poor cousin.

Often the focus for improving communication within the workplace becomes the responsibility of a small team or assigned to one person who has an aptitude for it. Yet effective communication goes beyond this and requires leadership support, time and potentially a financial input.

There are 3 areas where communication can be enhanced in organisations:

  1. Using formal and appropriate methods and channels of communication to tell the organisations story – this is particularly relevant for the CEO and Executive teams to create commitment to the organisations goals.
  2. Creating a culture and developing the skills for leaders to role model exemplary interpersonal skills, with the ability to communicate with groups and individuals to strengthen working relationships
  3. Creating the environment for communication to be open, informative and empowering, this could involve driving a culture where collaboration and cross team communication happens

For any organisation to benefit from the findings of this report it is necessary to look at what makes a dream employer and what the areas for improvement are. Consider how well you are delivering on all 3 elements of effective communication. Getting it right is essential in creating a culture of engagement.

Kandula can support you to audit communication within your organisation, looking beyond the channels of communication to assess the environment, skills and culture for effective communication