Get talking on the walk

March 31, 2016

Internal communication is on the move.

It is going mobile and there’s no point in trying to stop it. The fact is that for a third of the world’s population, a smartphone is the channel of choice. And in the developed west, that figure is two thirds.

Global TV viewing is falling at a rate of two per cent each year. Time spent reading the world’s newspapers has tumbled 26 per cent in four years.

But video consumption on mobile devices is growing by 35-45 per cent every year.

For all of us in IC, the challenge is to comprehend and embrace not just this unstoppable trend in choice of channel – but also the impact it is having on the culture that defines our attitude to communication.

Because the day the smartphone was invented, a big window opened and any suggestion that communication could be centrally controlled started to disappear out of it.

Right now, there are well over two billion people in the world, living under a spectrum of regimes and ideologies, who are able to say whatever they want to whoever they want, whenever they want . . . thanks to their mobile.

And their number is set to double in the next four years.

In business, we face a similar scenario, which presents us with two options: be afraid; or be excited.

At Headlines, we opt for the latter. The transition to mobile is under way, but in reality, it is a done deal. Regardless of current workforce demographic or accessibility, there is no going back.

And it is exciting. It offers the potential to take engagement, empowerment, collaboration, innovation and productivity into a new era.

For many in IC, this means a rethink – a move from managing internal communication, to facilitating and contributing.

Working in close collaboration with our clients, we have developed groundbreaking new app-based channels that are transforming the way organisations communicate while reducing complexity and saving on traditional IC spending. If you are interested in finding out more, please see our video produced with help from Premier Inn.

The fact is few dispute that good communication is a conversation and not a monologue; or that ‘top down’ is definitely not good.

Most recognise the value of collaboration. Many organisations, and their employees, are struggling to keep pace with a blossoming myriad of channels; and in almost all there is pressure to justify and demonstrate maximum value from IC spending.

Mobile is a great leveller and a brilliant opportunity. Now is the time to start walking the talk – or talking on the walk.