BY BEN CONNER
In our upcoming Conner Chat, we’re highlighting a critical part of every business’s operations and culture: communication. Proper communication demands understanding, and we have seen many business leaders shy away from health care program improvements because they struggled to develop clear messaging around the potential changes to their employees. Instead, they decided to continue with the same health care plan.
But these are volatile times. Blindly committing to the same plan year after year exposes your company to enormous rate hikes without significant plan improvements, saddling your company with bigger expenses for the same value as before.
Pick up the reins. Improving communication with your workforce is possible, and learning how to effectively communicate with your employees in 2020 unlocks opportunities within your business that stretch even further to your health care program.
Outdated Communication Tactics to Avoid
As we’ll discuss in our upcoming Conner Chat, many employers are entrenched in outdated communication tactics throughout their business, including within their health care plan. These tactics include:
- Dispensing information in a large live event. Group sessions have their place, but making them the focal point of your communications plan can be disastrous. Most employees dread sitting through long, company-wide meetings, and healthy employees tend to tune out plan details because they don’t believe they need the depth of knowledge provided. Later, when emergencies occur, they are unprepared because they lack understanding.
- Sending paper notifications. Long, written explanations of plan details are overwhelming to the average employee. When they receive plan updates alongside bills and other junk mail, employees may toss the letters in the trash.
- Using long, complicated messages. Lengthy emails and long videos are equally overwhelming to employees. Splitting plan details into brief, easy-to-understand snippets increases the chances that employees read and comprehend the message.
If employers fail to grow beyond these tactics and adopt newer communication strategies, they’re doomed to continue repeating the same mistakes.
New, Effective Communication Tactics
Instead of relying on outdated communication techniques, explore these strategies:
- Communication comes from you and your team. Our clients frequently ask us to explain plan details to their employees. We provide dedicated support throughout plan transitions and changes, but we encourage clients to lead the charge in front of their team. Hearing the changes come from the C-suite shows that the management team is taking ownership of the plan and believes in its effectiveness. We can provide coaching on the best tactics to share your message, but it’s important that the message comes from a leader inside the company.
- Explore current technologies as communication tools. Live video, social media, and text messages are excellent ways to communicate with today’s technology-savvy employees. These channels are convenient for your audience, and platforms like text messaging and social media force you to condense your message into easy-to-understand language.
- Ongoing communication. Few of your employees need medical attention right now. If you communicate all of your plan details in one session, your employees will forget the information before they need medical help. Drip information to employees on a regular basis through the communication channels we listed above. This constant feedback loop educates while building trust.
We’ve seen these strategies work in many different industries for a large variety of employees. Delivering information the way people want to be contacted increases the chances of them listening to and understanding your message. This ultimately fosters engagement and builds trust.
Register For Our June 23 Conner Chat
Learn even more about proper communication tactics in our upcoming June 23 Conner Chat. Topics we’ll examine include:
- Communication tactics to avoid
- Communication tactics to adopt
- How to build trust throughout your workforce
- A case study that demonstrates the power of good communication
Register for the Conner Chat here.