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A story-based approach to communications London Heads of Human Resources 23 April 2010 Tim Smith

A story-based approach to communications London Heads of Human Resources 23 April 2010 Tim Smith

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A story-based approach to communications London Heads of Human Resources 23 April 2010 Tim Smith

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  1. A story-based approach to communications London Heads of Human Resources 23 April 2010 Tim Smith

  2. One big question… Can you help us tell our story ?

  3. What do we mean by a story approach? A compelling foundation story Sits at the heart of internal communications and employee engagement - and used consistently in all communications activities Supported with examples and case studies Based on a thorough understanding of business A practical and focussed business tool

  4. Why does this approach work ? People understand and engage with stories People remember stories more than facts Help people understandand accept change Demonstrate and exemplify leadership Story of the place to work - attract and retain staff Stories help demonstrate behaviours and values Use for external validation and recognition Bring coherence to internal communications One story has multiple uses – value for money

  5. Big changes in local government after elections... Budgets slashed – big cuts in staff numbers... Councils to make difficult decisions on priorities... Councils introduce new ways of working... Councils move towards shared services... Councils urged to act greener... Lots of council stories

  6. The stories you will need to tell... How you are improving organisational efficiency – and doing more with less How you are going to manage changeand its impact on people How your employees will contribute to service improvements How you are investing in your own people The council’s role in the story of place Why thebest talent should work for you

  7. Applying the approach to your business Employee conferences Management briefings Structure for intranet content Employee induction Recruitment campaigns Big business transformation projects Engaging partners A checklist for all your employee communications

  8. Outcomes of using a story-based approach Proven as a tool in the private sector More effective internal communications and employee engagement activities Better understanding of your vision and plans – staff in excellent councils are more informed and understand objectives (Mori) Greater staff engagement – 78% of highly- engaged public sector staff believe they have an impact on service delivery and public service

  9. Outcomes of using a story-based approach More motivated staff – average 9.7 sickness days Advocates for you as an employer – only 42% of staff would recommend their council More buy-in to change – only 15% of public sector staff think it is managed well Build your council’s reputation with external partners and potential employees Great value from using one piece of work for many applications

  10. Vastly improved service – • and a lot of hard work • Build reputation and • recognition • Award entries and • specialist media targeting • Attract high-quality talent • Recognise and motivate • the team • Recognised as model of • good practice – share ideas Telling the story externally - award entries and media for Croydon Council

  11. Frontline service vital to • reputation • Build consistent story of • how they work and values • Embed in all employee • communications • Gathered stories of ‘Values • Stars’ • Increase in people clear • about vision, goals and • values • Maintained No.1 position Telling the story of expected behaviours – RAC Roadside

  12. Moved from operation to • decommissioning • Complete change and slump in • morale • Lots of managers from USA • and big culture clash • Communicated story of change • and opportunities • Increased consistency in key • communications activities • More understanding and • positive behaviours Telling the story of change – Dungeness B

  13. Background research • Top team interviews • Facilitated workshops • External context The Foundation Story The Strategic Stories Model • Gathering supporting stories from • the business • Generating stories from your own • employees The Story Bank • Internal communications strategy • Employer branding • Change communications • Message matrix Sharingyour story

  14. Concise Persuasive What does a good story look like? Understandable Engaging Supported by examples Adaptable

  15. Some final thoughts... “Stories are the single most powerful weapon in a leader’s arsenal” - Howard Gardner, Harvard University “Story telling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today” - Robert McKee “Stories stick to the brain; pages of a financial report don‘t" - Anita Roddick

  16. Thank you for listening – any questions? www.strategicstories.co.uk 023 8052 8300 info@strategicstories.co.uk