Importance of good Internal Communications

Posted on August 30, 2007. Filed under: Uncategorized |

An organisation is made up of people, the success or failure of the organisation is highly dependent on the employees that make up the culture and productivity.

Often neglected vis-a-vis operational issues, internal communications are essential to maintain the level of happiness in the organisation.

A theory, once taught to me in junior college comes to mind. It helps tailor the internal communications efforts later

First of which is the Herzberg two-factor theory. Understanding the implications will allow the tailoring of communication efforts to respond and manage the perceptions that arise from the theory.

Fredrick Herzberg argues that two distinct set of factors affect the employees motivation. Hygiene are factors that prevent employees from being dissatisfied. They do not necessary lead to motivation, but will prevent employees from being unhappy.

The other factor is known as Motivators . When present, they motivate the employees to do better, increase their productivity. Many of the individual factors in Motivators are internally driven.

Typical Hygiene Factors include
– Working conditions (Environment, proper desk etc)
– Quality of Supervision
– Payroll
– Job specification & scope
– Job security
– Company reputation
– Company policies and administration
– Interpersonal relations at the workplace (i.e. culture)

Typical Motivators are
– Job satisfaction by individual – Acheivements
– Recognition by senior management
– Sufficient authority and responsibility for job
– Interest in job
– Job advancement/promotional opportunities
– Payroll
– Personal growth

Based on this theory, four potential scenerios can happen:


Analysing the conseqences of the grid, it is not difficult to understand that Motivators are generally generated by perceptions of the individuals, and hence through appropriate management, it can be pushed up to the high quardrant.

Part of Hygiene factors are also perception oriented, and communications can be engaged to shift it as much as possible to the high quardrant as well.

To begin with, senior management needs to establish trust and credibility. Sounds awfully familiar for PR folks. The principles of communicatiosn are similar here, treat the employees with respect and establish an open platform for two-way communications.

Management should take some time to explain the rationale behind their decisions, a step often skipped as managment only announces the final results. For commercially sensitive information, management should express as much explaination as possible. Abeit the risk of an information leak, if trust is established, the employees will most likely reciprocate.

Culture should also not be taken lightly. In my previous articles, I argued that culture is always taken for granted as many believe that it is up to the individual. However, culture is also perception. Managing perception is still PR. PR still requires strategy and active mangement.

Hence, public relations is not just about external relations. PR is about strategy… the strategy of managing credibility.


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