Like you, we’ve been seeing many companies reaching out to their customers during the pandemic, which is good. But we think that internal communications are especially important now that many of us are working remotely.
We’re using more communications tools than ever to stay connected. Apps like Webex, Zoom, Slack, Trello, and Google Docs make collaborating easier. Plus, there’s good old texting, email and voice options. Whatever methods you are using to keep your teams connected, there’s never been a better time to fine-tune your internal communications strategy and establish some rules of engagement.
Having access to dozens (even hundreds) of tools is a terrific advantage when you team is distributed, but it can quickly become a juggling act with everyone constantly checking all their feeds. When do you use email versus texting? If you are using apps like Slack or Trello, how do you decide which one to use at any particular moment? When is it best to just pick up the phone and call someone? How do you make sure the important things don’t get overlooked, and that you aren’t pinging everyone with lower priority items?
We recommend establishing some simple rules of engagement, so everyone knows how to communicate and when. This is something that everyone should have input on, so start out by asking your team what they think works and what doesn’t. Then, create a simple list of how you propose using the communications tools available. Once everyone agrees, it’s up to you as the leader to reinforce the plan.
Here’s a snapshot of what we’ve developed here at BumbleBee:
- Call: when you have an immediate need or are on deadline.
- Text: when you need a quick answer or are on deadline and can’t reach via voice.
- Slack: when you have a question that isn’t urgent and/or need to ask more than one person.
- Trello: project management.
- Email: documents for review or discussion, setting up meetings.
- Zoom or Webex: Team meetings, client meetings.
Of course, the rules of engagement will be different for every organization but getting everyone on the same page will save you time and frustration.
I’m happy to sit down (virtually) with you to help you develop your internal communications plan for the new normal. Just give me a call.