23 Oct 2019
I would like to welcome you once again in our island, in order to discuss ways and exchange ideas as to how to enhance internal transparency, internal communication in an effort to transform corporate culture.
Internal communication is significant in any organisation because it is the building block of the organisational culture. The organisational culture is the atmosphere of the organisation based on its values, mission and work processes. When every member of the organisation holds the same values, understands the work policies and procedures and focuses on the same mission, the organisational culture promotes much more effective use of resources than under a culture that is more diffuse in its interpretation. This is so because not all members in an organisation interpret its mission and values in the same way.
Effective internal communication can ensure that all members of an organisation are working together towards a common goal and assisting each other effectively.
To my mind, a lot of work still needs to be done in terms of communication. Up to now, significant efforts have been made; however, consistency has not been achieved due to the fact that information has varied.
Creating a homogeneous internal communication space requires commitment from everyone involved: all levels of management, staff as well as the Board of Directors. For the benefit of all, a series of actions will need to be put forward to explain why, how and when management, staff and the Board need to participate more.
The benefits of working together within a cohesive culture, can give the following results:
- Employees can make more decisions themselves since they have the tools and knowledge to know the “right” decisions in line with the organisation’s goals.
- Employees can identify better with the goals, mission and procedures of the organisation which can result in a sense of “making a difference” and increase effort and efficiency.
- Departments share more resources and information resulting in less duplication of work.
- Day-to-day conflict can be reduced since a lot of conflict is the result of conflicting ideas on what is important to the organisation.
Management behaviour and decisions or rather how management behaviour and decisions are perceived by staff, can have a profound effect on an organisational culture. The problem may not always be the issue of consultation and transparency in decision-making but could relate to such problems as inconsistency of actions or treatment and appreciation of staff amongst many others.
To address these issues, first one needs to admit that there is a problem. In other words, management must recognise that there is a problem and must be willing to improve the situation. Once the will is there, an internal communication strategy can start to work to improve the organisational culture.
And while change and improvement may not be instantaneous, consistency and determination, backed by management and the Board, which are in line with the key messages will eventually bring change.
Once things start to work and there is effective employee communication, the outcome will be more satisfied and productive employees, thus attainment of goals. Feelings of trust, confidence, openness, supportiveness, satisfaction and involvement will be achieved and all of these will have a spill-over effect to overall external communication for the organisation.
I need to note that internal communication does not replace managing an organisation or managerial skills.
Central Bank of Cyprus