Marketing to your own employees is part of a strong employer brand. In most companies marketing and HR departments don’t work together. That’s a mistake. Tear that silo down. HR people need to be marketers. Marketing principles can help create and sustain a great company culture.
Your company culture is a product. Most companies don’t sell that product, although some like Zappos and Disney do. Most great organizations, like Catholic Healthcare West and McMurry, simply reap the rewards of that product in the form of higher productivity, client loyalty, and profitability.
As an employer, you are always selling the value of working at your company to your employees, and you want them to not only buy in, but sell the culture to others. If you don’t market the value of your company to your employees, you can bet recruiters will be selling them on the value of someone else’s.
Marketers all understand the “know-like-trust” factor; that people buy from those they know, like, and trust. How does that apply to building your employer brand?
- As a senior leader, be as transparent as possible. Share some things about yourself. Add a human touch. Make yourself approachable.
- Develop a clear picture of what it’s like to work at your company and promote that vision.
- Let people know about your commitment to being a great place.
- Develop a friendly “voice” for your company communications that reflects your culture. Is your culture warm and friendly? Powerful and professional? Innovative? Fun?
- Evoke positive emotions about working at your company.
- Communicate frequently to build respect.
- Show appreciation for good work.
- Be honest and share news openly. Employees don’t complain about over-communication from management.
- Give employees a say in decision-making. People don’t always have to have a vote, but they always have to have a voice.
- Communicate results, and celebrate successes.
- Demonstrate that you have the best interests of the employees in mind.
De Anne Russell, Employment Brand Manager for Catholic Healthcare West Arizona, emphasizes the value of honesty and frequency in communication. “Our leaders communicate good news and bad, and interact with employees in their workplace on their shift”. In a hospital, that means CHW leaders interact with staff on three shifts and weekends. It’s no wonder CHW found a direct correlation between staff satisfaction and patient satisfaction.
Is there any better reason to market to your staff? Know-trust-like can help you turn your employees into brand ambassadors. What do you think? We would love to have your feedback on employer branding.