One of the most important aspects of a successful intranet – or indeed any digital workplace tool – is having influencers on board who can promote their passion for the system to the wider workforce. And there is no stronger influencer than the company’s leadership team.
Stakeholder support from senior management is the ultimate seal of approval that the intranet is a valuable communication tool, and the endorsement will inspire others to use it in their daily workflow. An intranet that sees the CEO participating in internal social media discussions, posting blogs about their latest business idea, and sharing kudos to their staff via built-in ‘thank you’ tools will have much higher adoption rates and overall engagement. In other words, staff will appreciate the benefits of an intranet if they see the business owners using it.
And right now, in the midst of uncertainty, it’s more important than ever that business leaders continue to be a positive influence by increasing their visibility on the intranet. Here are a few reasons why:
To promote clear and transparent communications
Radio silence during times of crisis is simply not an option, and will only instil fear and panic amongst teams, leading to even more uncertainty and the temptation to fill gaps in knowledge with speculation. Clear and transparent communication, therefore, is vital, and the intranet is the perfect arena for leaders to be present and available.
A regular blog post by the MD, with updates on performance, new business opportunities, and workplace changes, will help alleviate staff concerns and promote a culture of transparency. It will also help staff feel connected to the business and each other, especially if some are working from the office and others from home.
To boost awareness of employee mental health
It’s likely that some – if not most – staff will have experienced a toll on their mental health as a result of the uncertainty of Covid-19. Indeed, a study by Mind Share Partners found that 42% of respondents had experienced a decline in mental health since the outbreak started.
Employee mental health and wellbeing should be a priority in any case, but the pandemic has certainly given it a sense of urgency, so leaders should be proactive and use the intranet as a tool to boost awareness.
By using the intranet as a hub for sharing mental health resources and communicating openly about the effects of the pandemic, leaders can help normalise these challenges and create a supportive environment where people feel heard. In fact, the same study by Mind Share Partners revealed that people are 28% more likely to report improved mental health when their organisation took action to address their needs.
To recognise and appreciate staff
Recognising individuals for their achievements takes mere moments, but the impact is long-lasting. A report by Gallup found that almost a quarter (24%) of people said their most memorable recognition came from the CEO, highlighting how important it is for leaders to personally thank their staff.
The same report showed that public recognition, in the form of awards or commendations, came out on top as the most memorable type of appreciation. Business leaders can easily utilise their intranet’s ‘thank you’ apps or employee recognition tools to make light work of expressing their gratitude.