I was clueless about where or how to start planning. I did know, though, what stories I wanted my kitchen to tell. Stories of memorable family dinners, cozy winter nights and easy going parties, to name a few. There was going to be no place like my home.
I got a lot of help (and felt a lot of frustration) and after months and months, it happened. The home of my dreams with a kitchen at its heart. All the planning seems to have been worth it, too, because it has never disappointed me. My stories keep coming true.
In the recent WorldatWork workspan,"The Top 5 Questions about Communicating Compensation" are answered by Kristine Oliver and Rebecca Toman of Pearl Meyer & Partners. If you are thinking about renovating your approach to communication, the article provides a good overview of tactics that companies are using based on a study that Pearl Meyer has done. Here's where you can get an idea of what goes into a good plan.
Also check in on the WorldatWork video interview of Karmen Reid, Director of Compensation at the Mayo Clinic describing how they, "Increase[d] Pay Satisfaction Without Increasing Pay." It's a great way to learn from this prestigious organization's story.
But then keep in mind that it's the Mayo Clinic's story not yours. And while they may have answered the "5 questions," it was not just the tactics but also the story they told and how they built their community through the story that increased satisfaction.
Compensation communication has the unique quality of touching employees' emotions as well as building understanding. If your compensation communications are going to matter, they need to tell your story and build your community.
While it is crucial for employees to better understand things like salary ranges they get jazzed when they can see how they play a part in the bottom line and/or customer satisfaction. Try to tap into those high response emotions when you communicate by explaining compensation practices in their strategic context. A context of why your company exists, how the compensation program helps make that possible and what it feels to be part of your work community (at their individual job level). Wouldn't you rather trade familiarity with performance rating definitions for discussions about how I contributed to 3rd Q results? (Most employees would, too.)
I think you've heard on Compensation Cafe that, "Everything We Do in Compensation Is Communications." The choice of social media over emails will matter only after you've figured out how to have something of real value to say. Something that builds a community devoted to your business's story and helps the story become real.
Margaret O'Hanlon is founder and Principal of re:Think Consulting. She'll join Ann Bares and Dan Walter of the Compensation Cafe to speak the unspoken -- Everything You Do (in Compensation) Is Communication -- in an upcoming book. Margaret brings deep expertise in compensation, career development and communications to the dialog at the Café. Before founding re:Think Consulting, she was a Principal with Towers Watson. Margaret is Deputy Director of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Pacific Plains Region. She earned her M.S. and Ed.S. in Instructional Technology at Indiana University, Bloomington. Creative writing is one of her outside passions, along with Masters Swimming.