It seems like the way I'm justifying not quite writing that big post on "Life, the Universe and Internal Communications" is to keep reading Black Belt Dojo, and blogging about the interesting things there. At least it's not Sue this time. Liam Fitzpatrick posts Nasty questions that IC managers nominate as the ones they would least like to face:
I thought I'd share with you some of the recent suggestions - they are quite chilling...
- What measurements do you have to show how you add value?
- Why do we need an internal communication team when we can just buy in a toolkit and some training for our managers to be communicators?
- Can you actually prove that you’re contributing to business revenues?
- How does your communication plan fit into the business strategy?
- Why do we need an in-house team?
- If I chose a member of staff at random and asked them last year’s revenue figures, would they know?
- How much money do you spend on internal communication?
- How can you justify the cost? What’s your return on investment (ROI)?
And my favourite...
- What would happen to the company if we shut down the internal communications department? Would anyone notice?
It's a good post to help get one thinking about the "business case" for Internal Communications. Largely of course, there are answers for these questions, but some of them are not easy answers, particularly those that focus on quantitative measures. The value of improved internal communication can be measured, but not always easily in accounting terms.
That of course does not mean we should give up on all this intangible work, but I do suspect there is a case for adding some more tangible strings to the internal communications bow. I'll write some more about this next time...