How to cultivate a culture of wellness on internal social channels

Stacie Barrett of Domino’s shares how internal social channels can help provide avenues for workplace wellness.

When considering platforms to socialize wellness at work, your internal social media channels and intranet may be underutilized topics at your organization and might only sometimes be top of mind. But thanks to expert minds like Stacie Barrett, director of internal communications at Domino’s, communicators are starting to rethink how we share wellness content and conversations with employees. Ahead of her presentation on the subject at Ragan’s Social Media Conference in March, we spoke to Barrett about how internal social strategies can serve as a conduit to creating a happier, healthier place to work.

Diving deeper than the surface

It’s an almost ubiquitous societal trope to knock social media as something that fosters vanity and surface-level influencing. And in many instances, there’s some truth to that. But Barrett challenges that notion when it comes to using internal social channels to promote workplace wellness, claiming that it can help reach employees on a deeper level.

“There’s much more to your team members than what they do in the capacity of their jobs,” Barrett said. “If you can strategically plan your storytelling efforts on social around the whole selves of your team members, you’ll create a space that encourages employees to bring their whole selves to work.”

Barrett added that everything comes down to reconsidering how you think about your teams.

“A lot of what I’ve been thinking about recently centers on what we can do to create both a welcoming workplace in person for employees who are in the office, but also how we can work with other parts of the organization to help employees feel seen,” Barrett said.

Words matter

We all know that the words we choose can have a long-lasting impact. But when you’re putting out wellness messaging internally over social channels, really think about the words and tone you’re using. It might be more impactful than you think at first.

Stacie Barrett, director of internal communications, Dominos

“When we communicate with our teams, we need to meet our members where they are, with language that fosters the connection they desire. At Domino’s, we use language that focuses on inclusion and helps everyone feel like they’re part of the overall mission, and that takes conscious inclusion. We want our messages to be crafted with the whole team in mind,” Barrett said.

Barrett went on to say that these inclusionary steps can also be helpful for team and culture building. “Internal comms aren’t a one size fits all situation — we should think about the individuality of our teams when strategizing communications, whether that’s on social, in meetings, or in our individual interactions,” she added.

Collaboration is key

Although the comms department might be the group that’s putting social media messages together for internal consumption, in almost all cases, they’re not going it alone in crafting what needs to go into messaging. At Dominos, Barrett told us that crafting messages for internal social, whether it’s about company events or benefits programs, is often done in close collaboration with the human resources department.

“Our human resources team is a major collaborator of ours, as the leaders in our organization on efforts like diversity and inclusion, it’s important to know what their objectives are and to have close relationships there to support their initiatives,” Barrett said.

Stacie also pointed out a concrete way to highlight the collaboration between human resources and communications on internal social channels — employee promotions. She said that when promotions season comes around in an organization, human resources can relay the news to communications, who can then package the information in a way that celebrates not only the achievements of the employees in question but also in a fashion that portrays them as an exemplary part of organizational culture in the given social posts.

Social media in the workplace doesn’t just have to be where you show off your organization’s latest project or the summer outing – it can also really serve a purpose when it comes to helping employees feel included, which is a major step towards creating a healthy culture. Your internal communications can use them as not just a place to share good news, but as a force for wellness at work.

You can learn more from Stacie at Ragan’s Social Media Conference, March 15-17 at Walt Disney World.

Sean Devlin is an editor at Ragan Communications. In his spare time he enjoys Philly sports, a good pint and ’90s trivia night.

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