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Two experienced HR communications consultants show how to dramatically improve the effectiveness of every HR message. HR professionals know their programs are pivotal to organizational success, but they also know how difficult it is to communicate those programs effectively. Hampered by legal restrictions, highly complex policies and programs, corporate politics, and old-fashioned notions about business communication, they create communications their audiences simply ignore. It needn’t be that way! Alison Davis and Jane Shannon present simple, powerful principles and techniques every HR professional can use, even those who’ve never been comfortable as writers. Davis and Shannon demonstrate how to treat employees as customers, and use the same strategies, tools, and care your company uses to sell its products or services. The authors help HR professionals understand their customers’ (and executives’) needs and motivations more clearly; package information to promote faster, better decision-making; and measure their effectiveness. They present specific solutions for safely eliminating unnecessary detail and jargon; explaining benefits, pay, and policies; improving recruiting, orientation, and outplacement communications; supporting retirement planning; and improving performance management.
About the Authors xix
Part I: Taking a New Approach 9
Chapter 1: Know Your Employees 11
Chapter 2: Treat Your Employees Like Customers 27
Chapter 3: Plan and Manage Communication 39
Chapter 4: Frame Your Message 55
Chapter 5: Write Simply and Clearly 69
Chapter 6: Leverage Visuals 85
Chapter 7: Use the Right Tool for the Job 101
Chapter 8: Make Meetings Meaningful–and Support Managers 119
Chapter 9: Measure Effectiveness 135
Part II: Communicating in Key Situations 151
Chapter 10: Recruiting 153
Chapter 11: Orientation 167
Chapter 12: Policies 181
Chapter 13: Benefits 197
Chapter 14: Compensation 215
Chapter 15: Performance Management 231
Chapter 16: Saving for Retirement 249
Chapter 17: Leaving the Company 263