One of eighteen competencies in Workitect’s competency model for human resources professionals working in a global environment. It is one of five competencies in the HR LEADERSHIP COMPETENCIES cluster. Resources for developing the competency are listed in the 166-page Resource Guide for Developing Global HR Competencies.
Definition: Effectively communicates core values and behavioural standards; monitors and facilitates internal communications; disseminates necessary information to appropriate parties; develops the organization’s image within local community.
An employee demonstrating this competency:
Communicating the firm’s culture and values
- Articulates the firm’s culture, values and goals and inspires others with that vision.
- Utilizes HR team and senior employees to establish role models for others behaviours and attitudes.
- Assures the development of clear and focused letters, newsletters, memos, etc. to inform employees of programmes and organisational objectives
- Monitors internal communications to ensure that the firm’s goals, mission and values are represented.
- Manages internal communications to help employees understand their roles and responsibilities in meeting and exceeding the expectations of customers, owners and employees.
- Educates management and employees to understand their role and responsibility for internal communications.
- Analyses, categorizes and circulates information to others.
- Assures that information is communicated at a level appropriate for the audience.
- Oversees that all employee have access to relevant company and customer communications.
- Works with management team to promote the organisation as a reputable and respectful employer in the local community
- Pro-actively develops relationships with organisations in the local community to provide humanitarian assistance when needed.
Importance of This Competency
This competency, the first strategic competency of five under the category of Human Resources Leadership, revolves around the organisation’s values and culture, and places the Human Resources function clearly at the helm in promoting these success characteristics.
General Considerations in Developing This Competency
The most obvious way to begin to develop this competency is to ‘walk the talk’ and demonstrate our company’s values and culture in your day-to-day interactions. If you are seen to demonstrate these characteristics yourself, then you will be able to start to practice the skills and other behaviours that will help you to communicate and educate others in their importance, value and application – you will be seen as a credible source of information on these issues.
Practicing This Competency
As a Team Member
- Look for ways to incorporate values and culture characteristics in your daily interactions, and be consistent in their implementation.
- Look for ways to reinforce these characteristics in other communication pieces (e.g. employee newsletters, notice boards, etc.).
- Review other internal communication documents (e.g. memos and letters) to make sure that the message is consistent with these characteristics.
- Look for ways to make information more accessible and relevant to employees.
- Provide feedback and examples to your team leader of situations in which the culture and value characteristics are being demonstrated (or not demonstrated).
- Look for humanitarian opportunities in the local community for the company and employees to connect with and support.
As Team Leader
- Make sure that you demonstrate the value and culture characteristics with your own team (ask your team for feedback) – practice what you preach!
- Recognize and encourage behaviors in your team members that demonstrate these characteristics.
- Identify opportunities to coach other managers and supervisors in ‘walking the talk’ – coach and provide feedback where necessary.
- Review internal correspondence and communication materials to make sure that all written materials also ‘walk the talk’.
- Look for additional methods of increasing communications within the firm, encouraging ‘two-way’ communications and open dialogues that move beyond curt email messages.
- Encourage relationships with local organizations and other activities and behaviors that demonstrate value and culture characteristics within the context of the larger, local community.
- After sending out a significant report or memo, contact people and ask for feedback on it. Try to find out how many people read it and remembered it and what they thought of it.
- If you use voice mail or e-mail as part of your work, ask co-workers about how effectively you use these communication vehicles and what you can do to improve your effectiveness in communicating.
- Ask colleagues for specific feedback on the degree to which they believe you effectively model organization’s values and culture.
Learning from Experts
- Observe the communication behavior of a skilled leader. Look at the frequency, style, and format of this person’s communications. If possible, ask this person about his/her thinking in planning particular communications.
- Before sending out an important communication, ask for suggestions from someone strong in communication skills.
Coaching Suggestions for Managers
- If you are coaching someone who is trying to develop this competency, you can:
- Model this competency by sharing information and by crafting clear, concise messages addressing the needs of the audience.
- Provide assignments that involve drafting memos, reports, or other communications. Provide constructive feedback on the communications.
- Help this person think through the communication vehicles and messages needed by a department or team of which he/she is a part.
- Assign this person to a team or task force headed by someone who demonstrates a high level of attention to communication.
Sample Development Goals
- By June 12, I will make recommendations to the Planning Team on ways we should communicate the new operational plan to the Division.
- By July 1, I will distribute a memo to all department heads summarizing the work of the Waste Reduction Team. A week later, I will call six of the department heads and ask for feedback on this memo.
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