11 ways to botch your company’s internal communications

To ensure failure, send frequent, lengthy messages that have nothing to do with the company’s bottom line. Also, use jargon whenever possible, and neglect the power of great storytelling.

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By brushing up on ruinous internal communication mistakes, you’ll be better equipped to diagnose—and overcome—any obstacles you might have in your organization. Being mindful of common blunders will help you be more vigilant, shrewd and effective.

A study I conducted with Michael Ambjorn of Align Your Org analyzed how internal communicators fail; it used data from more than 100 companies (with about 1 million employees) across 10 countries.

Based on those findings, here are 11 common ways internal communicators miss the mark:

1. Too many messages.

Average-performing organizations are 40 percent more likely to cram too many messages into communications; high-performing organizations are much more judicious with messaging.

Do you filter and focus your messages on what’s genuinely important, or do you inundate your workers with inconsequential fluff?

2. Irrelevant communication monologues.

Communicators at high-performing organizations produce a balanced blend of employee-centric messages and tend to be better at listening and using two-way channels.

How much do you talk about yourself, rather than listening to others? Internal communication should be a dialogue—not a monologue.

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