Study: Execs realize value of staff comms

STAMFORD, CT: A survey released last week found that senior executives across the corporate landscape are embracing the idea that communication is among the most vital contributors to employee satisfaction.

STAMFORD, CT: A survey released last week found that senior executives across the corporate landscape are embracing the idea that communication is among the most vital contributors to employee satisfaction.

The survey, conducted for the second year in a row by consulting firm Towers Perrin, garnered responses from 18,000 employees at 11 multinational companies. It found solid increases in workers who felt "their employers take a keen interest in including them in company news" and those who say, "senior leadership effectively communicates the company's progress."

"We really saw some meaningful progress in people's perception of senior leadership communication effectiveness," said Charlie Watts, Towers Perrin's unit coordinator in Boston for change implementation. "They are finally getting improved grades from employees about the way they communicate the company mission."

Benchmark questions about effectiveness of communication saw rises of 5% to 8% across the board, compared to 2004. Fifty percent of workers this year agreed that "senior leadership demonstrates a sincere interest in [employee's] satisfaction," an 8% rise from last year.

Watts said that one factor in the rise of employee satisfaction is the fact that companies are using more personal communication tactics, like face-to-face meetings, than in the past.

"[Companies] put greater focus on getting leaders out and about," he said. "The data would suggest it's beginning to pay off."

Perhaps reflecting the decline in the credibility of media outlets, 71% of respondents said that they "trust information from company sources more than from the news media," a 5% increase.

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