Employees don’t always have deep insights into the role each one plays in taking a product from concept to delivery. Honda R&D Americas’ employee newsletter Insight sought to change that with a story about the new Honda Odyssey—a story that’s won first place in the “Feature Article” category of Ragan’s 2017 Employee Communications Awards.
With the Honda Odyssey about to hit the market with its newest, most advanced model, internal communicator Jeff Reed and the communication team set out to guide employees of the organization through the various stages of the vehicle’s development.
No linear narrative was employed for this effort. Rather, the many steps the Odyssey went through were conveyed with employee stories, each of which had to be compelling enough to inspire a reader to click a “read more” button to go from the newsletter to the longer-form content on the organization’s intranet.
Reed and his team reviewed the innovative features of the Odyssey to decide which to highlight, then reached out to project leaders and subject matter experts to determine how best to tell the story of how that feature was brought to life.
The lead feature in the monthly newsletter (all of which addressed the Odyssey launch) delivered “a never-before-seen look at how the new features were brainstormed and, ultimately, developed for production.”
The article was uniquely compelling because the process used for the Odyssey involved unconventional research approaches. Combined with pull-quotes and big, colorful photos, the article was opened and “liked” by an impressive number of HRA employees.
One employee being interviewed for another article told the writer he wanted the same approach used that was applied to the Odyssey story, another indication that the piece made an impact.
Congratulations to Jeff Reed and his team.