Clarity begins at home: Trust internal communication to create alignment

March 12th, 2014

( First appeared in IIM Ahmedabad Alumni Journal, Feb, 2014)

As a practitioner who has handled 360 degree communication covering all stakeholders, I have often noticed a tendency to assign attention in proportion to outlay. Consequently, internal communication, with its relatively modest budgets, does not get its due from some constituents of the managements. If only, the outcome, and not the outlay, were to be reckoned, businesses would benefit through internal communication, which creates employee alignment, without which there is no sustainable brand or customer satisfaction.

Through this article, I hope more business organisations step up internal communication, with the prior knowledge of likely challenges, pitfalls and essential facilitating attitude. This attempt has been prompted by the diffidence and scepticism that exists at various levels in a large number of organisations.

I hope to inspire Corporate Communicators to participate in change management and co-create history, rather than being just chroniclers of history.

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Why I admire Vikki : A belated tribute to the PR agency executive

January 7th, 2014

( First appeared in Vidura Oct-Dec 2013)

Let me call him Vikki. The youngest son of a retired Delhi babu, Vikramaditya realises in his 3rd year BE, that Engineering is not his cup of tea and, calling himself Vikki, enters the exciting world of PR. Vikki is typical – and possibly the mean – of the PR executive population. ‘Vikki’ is apt because when stuck, people turn to him and he is supposed to know everything. ‘Vikki’ is apt, also because he is easily editable even without a murmur.

Having worked with a large number of PR agency executives in the last three decades and having seen many more in action and inaction, not to forget what numerous Corporate Communicators across cities have shared, I believe that Vikki and his colleagues have not received their due credit. Hence this tribute to Vikki, though admittedly, not without the inevitable errors of generalisation.

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“Improve”, an employee engagement programme

October 13th, 2010

I had the good forfute to initiate in 1997 and then nurture for 12 years, an employee engagement programme that is yet unique in India’s corporate sector in terms of innovation, motivation and contribution to the balance sheet.

On the night of 9 September, when Air India Express flight IX 622B took off from Chennai, headed for Kuala Lumpur, it had 185 passengers, all of them employees of Ashok Leyland. Around the same time, flights were taking off with their colleagues, from airports at Bangalore Mumbai and New Delhi. They were headed for the Genting Highlands south of Kuala Lumpur to compete in the finals of Improve 2009, joined by judges, guests and volunteers. Together, a group of 460, many of them using their hurriedly obtained passports for the first time.
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