CIPR Inside Webinar 3 Being a strategic business partner 29.11.13


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Being a strategic business partner. Move from drafter and crafter to strategic business partner. James Harkness, Jane Mitchell delivered a webinar on 29 November 2013. Full webinar is available to members on demand on


  • 1. CIPR INSIDE WEBINAR: Being a Strategic Business Partner James Harkness & Jane Mitchell2013

2. Positioning internal communications 3. What do your senior leaders and executive team think of internal communications? 4. How are you perceived? Clear purpose Right capability Strong credibility 5. Do you have a clear purpose? 6. Are you here to actively participate in and influence critical business decisions? or Are you here to execute communications around decisions that have been made? 7. Positioning internal communications 8. A changing purpose DoingEnablingCommunications Creator and InfluencerCommunication EnablerPrimary objective: Employees understand and believe in company and good valuesPrimary objective: Employees are mobilised around company goalsMethod: Inform and inspireMethod: Provoke and facilitateCommunications environment: Largely hierarchical; one-way push; rely on mass channels and manager cascadesCommunications environment: On employees terms; two-way; participatory; rely on interactive channels (face-to-face and web 2.0)Communication skill set: Writing; channel management; persuasion; shaping strategic agendaCommunication skill set: Coaching; facilitating; behavioural phycology; identifying business need for communicationTypical success measures: Message reach; employee attitudesTypical success measures: Employee mobilisation; business outcomesSource: Communications Executive Council Research 9. Do you have the right capability? 10. Internal communications competencies 11. Beyond traditional skills Business acumen Bias for action Interpersonal awareness Dealing with ambiguity 12. Do you have real credibility? 13. Use measurement data to make the case 14. Fresh knowledge and insight Keeping informed: Keeping informed: Intranet Website Annual report AGM Analysts views Executive presentations Business strategy Conversations with senior leaders Channels from other areas of the organisation Press Competitor websites/ publications Campaign groups Industry journals Networking with industry peers Conferences/seminarsThe external environment Whats influencing our business strategy?The business goals and challengesWhat we need people to do differentlyWhats influencing our people?Employees mood and behavioursKeeping informed: People survey Focus groups Employee sounding boards Strong internal network Company canteen! Union contacts 15. Standing in the shoes of your leader Top business leader concerns 2013 Customer relationships Operational excellence Human capital Government regulation Corporate brand and reputationChartered Management Institute 2013 16. Winning the ear of your CEO Share a published article that supports your recommended approach Ask questions that lead your client to come to the right conclusion on their own Provide anecdotes or examples of where a different approach has delivered results Share best practice use outside world examples Find data research, case studies, benchmarks to provide evidence for your suggestion Be ready to stand by your advice 17. Making your mark when it matters most Business transformation Redundancies Operational crisis System failures Executive departures 18. Great questions A great question should: Demonstrate your own knowledge of an issue Be one that others have not thought of asking Be challenging to answer Lead naturally to more questions Open up new avenues of thought not explored before Give you real insight to the thoughts, and view point of the leader Spark creativity and innovation Not expect a straight forward answer 19. In summary Purpose Define your role and communicate Capability Build your influencing skills and confidence Credibility Learn about your business and give business (not communications) advice 20. ContactJames Harkness & Jane MitchellJames. +44 (0)1483