AT&T’s communication had historically featured the old guard of the company’s IT and network development functions. There are a lot of reasons a company would want to refocus on younger staff and the opportunities for career development, not the least of which is the heightened focus on corporate social responsibility, including the way organizations treat their employees.
This particular dimension of CSR can also influence recruiting; the best engineers want to work for the organizations with the best cultures and opportunities for career growth. A series of Q&A-style interviews with the bright young people who represent AT&T’s future also allowed the communications team to align the company with the movement to inspire young people (especially girls) to focus on education in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and math).
One such interview in particular—with Alexandria McCuien—resonated with employees who also were being introduced to a new suite of online self-service tools geared toward helping employees manage their careers. Quotes like this one led to more than 20,000 page views, 85 comments, and 587 “thumbs up” for the article:
“If you are able to have a successful outcome, it’s like, ‘Oooh, I wrote this program and it works.’”
For producing a compelling article that achieved business-centric objectives while boosting the self-confidence of the interviewee herself (she later wrote a Huffington Post article on encouraging young girls to pursue STEM careers), we are pleased to award the prize for Best Interview or Profile in Ragan’s 2014 Employee Communications Awards to AT&T, and staff representative Chris Morgan.