[2014 update: the following content still resonates, although the original links in this post were removed because they are no longer available.]
Here’s a fascinating concept to add to your internal marketing & communications toolbox: Workplace Journalism — “a conscious effort to make employee communications at least partly about employees and their concerns, not just the business and its issues.”
I learned about this from Barry Nelson, who believes business communicators can have a positive impact by adding more “empathetic, employee-advocacy journalism … into their otherwise business-results focused reportorial mix.”
He recommends that in addition to communicating corporate strategy, goals, progress & results, (which employees need to know), companies should also share stories of how employees cope with on-the-job issues & stresses (which employees want to know). According to Barry, we need to give “at least some prominence to our employees’ human concerns” such as “how and why to get along with the boss, make friends on the job, cope with stress, live the brand, be a good teammate, and other aspects of a satisfactory work life.”
This isn’t just ‘feel-good’ communications for the heck of it. Organizations that share these types of stories demonstrate their care and concern for employees, and this contributes to a strong sense of employee commitment and loyalty in turn.
To learn more, check out Barry’s guidance on getting started with Workplace Journalism.